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Common Questions by Anyone Planning To Go To Trial for A DUI


When It Comes To Deciding Whether To Go To Trial Or Not, Are There People Who Don’t Like The Plea Offer That’s Been Given? Is That Ever A Reason To Go To Trial?

Absolutely. If you have got a questionable DUI, got a refusal, you have no sobriety tests, and then it is very difficult if the state’s got enough evidence to prove you guilty, and you have a prior. The state might just say, “Look, we’re not going to offer you a reckless driving,” which you would probably get without the prior. Then you are like, “I don’t want to take just a conviction, what do I benefit by taking the conviction? I might as well go to trial.” So that definitely happens.

If You Go To Trial and You’re Found Guilty, Can the Punishment Be Typically Worse than the Plea Offer?

Absolutely. A lot of times, the prosecutor will make you a little bit better offer than you are going to get just so they do not have to go to trial. Unless you are a young attorney and you are trying to get trial experience, nobody wants to do trials. Trials are not fun. When you are first in the business, it is fun but if you are doing them a number of years, you have got things to do in your life. You do not want to waste days doing a trial where it is clear to you one way or the other what it is and it is in the best interest of your client to negotiate the case and be done with it.

If you absolutely want to go to trial, you need to be completely informed about what you are getting yourself into. Do not come to the attorney later saying, “Gee, I couldn’t possibly consider this was going to happen if I got found guilty.” You need to go over all the possible things that could happen to you either way so you can make an informed decision and hopefully make the right decision.

What Are Some Reasons For A DUI Case To Be Dismissed?

DUI cases do not get dismissed. They may get found not guilty, but they are never going to get dismissed. There is no such thing as dismissed for lack of evidence. The judge would have to find you not guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The judge or the jury’s got to make that determination based on all of that evidence, was the defendant proved guilty beyond reasonable doubt that not only was he driving but he was impaired and that impairment was caused from the alcohol or some drug or controlled substance. So, there are a bunch of things to consider.

Does It Cost More To Go To Trial?

Yes absolutely. If the attorney can go in and just do a pre-trial and get it worked out to a good disposition for their client, then they do not have to spend as much time in court. Attorneys charge extra for a trial. They tell people upfront “this is how much I charge for a case.” Usually, they tell them after reviewing the case. They will see whether it looks like it is going to go to trial and then say, “Look, if you want a trial, it’s this much extra; if you want a jury trial, it’s that much extra.” Most of the time, when the attorney quotes a fee and looks at the case and it is pretty straightforward. They quote them a fee which includes the bench trial, not a jury trial, because that takes at most usually a couple of hours. You can figure that into what is worth for you to represent the person.

However, if it is going to be a jury trial, those are going to take days and you have to tell them upfront, “Look, you are certainly welcome to have a jury trial and if that’s what you want, that’s what we’ll have but it’s going to take a lot more time out of my days, it’s going to cost you more money and you may not even get a better opinion.”

Most of the judges know if you go to trial, there is a reason for it. Attorneys do not go to trial just because they need some trial experience. They have been doing this long enough. They know it is the last thing they want to do but if they have a legitimate reason or they are backed into a corner, they are going to come out swinging. They are going to try their best to do what they have to do to make sure the state does not prove their client behind the reasonable doubt.

If you need answers to Common Questions by Anyone Planning to Go to Trial for a DUI, call the law office of Barry Boches & Associates for a FREE Initial Consultation at (847) 244-4636 and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.

Barry Boches, Esq.

Get your questions answered - call me for your free phone consultation (847) 244-4636.

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