Drinking as a social activity can be fun, but the moment you get behind the wheel, such time of enjoyment can turn into a nightmare. Being charged with DWI (driving while intoxicated) in Watertown for the first time can be a frightening experience.
With that quick period, the DWI charges against you might change your life for good. Thus, it’s in your best interest to fight for your rights as much as possible. Here are some of the important steps you should do when facing a DWI offense in Watertown.
1. Take the chemical test the soonest time possible after the arrest.
Getting DWI charges means you’re required by the state to undergo a chemical test to determine your current blood alcohol level. This test is specifically provided for the police officers to deduce the amount and level of alcohol in your blood at the time you’re arrested.
If you don’t want further legal troubles along the way, don’t ever think of saying no to the test or else you’ll have so much to lose by refusing.
2. Call a DWI attorney.
Your charges will be handled better with the help of an experienced lawyer. However, you need to keep in mind that using a general attorney for DWI court cases will not improve your chances of getting a favorable decision. That’s because the laws involving it are complicated and need an in-depth understanding of the legal processes.
Even if other lawyers can advocate for you, it’s still advisable to hire someone whose legal expertise involves handling these type of cases. That way, you can be sure that they will do everything to build a strong defense for you.
If you’re looking forward to understand how an attorney can help you, visit this website for more information.
3. Find a bail bondsman.
After you’ve been apprehended for DWI, a formal accusation of the offense will be made. Not only that, you might also need to post bail after your apprehension. Even if most people might be released without posting bond, some still require the assistance of a bondsman.
So, locate these individuals and ask them to post bail for you. Although it’s quite costly, it’s still cheaper than the entire bail requirement of the court. Remember, the aid of the bail bondsman serves as a guarantee that you’ll appear in all your hearings because if you fail to do so, they will probably run after you.
4. Ask for a DMV hearing, if possible.
Your charges and arrest, for instance, increase the probability of getting your driver’s license suspended. If you don’t want this to happen, make use of your available time to request for a DMV hearing.
It’s an administrative procedure that deals only with your driving privileges. While the DMV won’t charge fines or send you to prison, it can automatically cause the suspension of your license if your attorney fails to make a request.
5. Get ready for your arraignment.
The arraignment is a part of the trial where you first appear in court and stand before the judge who will explain the charges brought against you. At this stage, you’re also given the opportunity to enter your plea. If you decide to plead guilty, the assigned judge will try and hear the case to determine your punishment.
The different penalties you might deal with include:
● Revocation or suspension of your license – This sentence usually applies to second-time offenders where it confiscates your legal right to drive within a specified period.
● Ignition interlock devices – You’re mandated to install these interlock devices every time you start your vehicle.
● Car impoundment – Depending on the extent of the charges, the court has the option to take your car away from you entirely or for a certain amount of time.
● Excessive fines and penalties – The court will impose steep fines and penalties depending on the severity of the charges against you.
● Incarceration – This usually takes place when you become a repeat offender who has started to put other’s lives in danger.
However, if you plead not guilty, it means you have to go back to the court to attend the preliminary hearing and trial. At this time, you need to sit down with your DWI attorney and discuss the things you need to know about DWI/DUI law as well as the actions you should take. Also, be sure the legal counsel you hire knows how to challenge the merits of the case.
You’ll never know when you might be caught for DWI, so you’re probably not ready as to what should be done next. However, by following the tips mentioned in this article, you’ll be able to take the correct steps and make sure to not make the mistake of driving after drinking again. If you’ve been facing DWI charges in Watertown now, hire the best lawyer who will strive hard to defend you and find the best measures to handle your situation.