Arrested Booked and Released. Now What?
Your First Deadline: DMV Ten-Day Hearing Request
The Police took your California Driver's License.
In place of your license, you now have a pink 8x11 paper.
This paper will serve as your temporary driver's license.
If you look at the pink document carefully, you will see that
you have just 10 days to request a DMV hearing. If you do not
request a timely hearing you will not be able to do so
later. Even if you think that you are going to be found guilty,
make this hearing request. Your attorney
can make the DMV hearing request on your behalf.
Even if you do not have a winning DMV case,
your attorney can help coordinate any DMV suspensions,
and minimize the time that you are not allowed to be in your vehicle.
When Should I See an Attorney?
Pick up the phone:
Your first court date
may be as soon as 10 days or as late as six weeks from the date of your
arrest. The time to see an attorney is now, while memories are fresh and
witnesses still available. Everyone needs an attorney, guilty or
innocent. In fact, innocent people need a lawyer more because a jury
may not automatically find them innocent. You should plan to start
meeting with potential attorneys as quickly as possible. Do not make
the first court date without hiring your attorney. By the time that
you first get to court several important dates have passed. A good
attorney will have you making appointments within days of your arrest,
in an effort to minimize any potential harm.
How Do I Choose An Attorney?
Take great care in selecting your DUI attorney. Of course you should make sure
that your attorney is qualified, with plenty of trial experience and
knowledgeable in DUI laws, but it is more than that.
Do not pay for an experienced attorney who just sends a junior associate to
court. Make sure that your attorney is interested in your case.
Your attorney will never have more interest in your case than at
the first meeting and the reception will never be better. If you
find that your attorney is unable to connect with you, how do you
think he interacts with the courtroom District Attorneys and Judges.
Bottom Line: We care!
You deserve more than
just a lawyer. There are many fine DUI lawyers in the 831. Experience is just
the first factor. If you do not "connect" with your attorney, will he do any
better in court? Face it; many people go through the Monterey County court
system for DUI offenses every day. To the Judge and the District Attorney
all the defendants look the same. It is up to your lawyer to make you stand
out, to be seen as a person and not just another case number. If your lawyer
lacks the ability to interact on a personal level with the system's players,
you are going to be just another number.
Shawn C. Mills, Attorney at Law
Law Office of Shawn C. Mills
702-A Forest Avenue
Pacific Grove, CA 93950