Driving while intoxicated, a DWI offense, is a serious crime in all parts of the United States. The exact elements vary from one jurisdiction to another, but if an individual is found behind the wheel and intoxicated past a certain, legal benchmark, then that person will be charged with a DWI. Punishments include fines, the loss of driving privileges, and even jail or prison time depending on the severity of the crime and whether anyone was injured as a result of the driver’s intoxication. If someone is being charged with a DWI crime in New York City though, it’s important to get a DWI attorney post haste.
What a DWI Attorney Does
A DWI attorney is a practicing lawyer with a specialty in defending those who have been accused of driving while intoxicated. NYC DWI lawyers will be intimately familiar with the statutory and case law of New York, and they’ll have the know-how and expertise to negotiate the waters of the New York City court system. These lawyers will be able to weigh a case on its own merits, and if it comes down to it to litigate the case in front of a jury.
The main benefit of a DWI attorney in New York City is that he or she will have an expert knowledge that will be at a client’s disposal. The attorney will be able to make connections with the right individuals, make cases for plea bargaining, and in many cases procure more lenient fines or sentencing. In the case that the prosecution’s evidence isn’t enough to prove a client was in fact driving while intoxicated then the DWI lawyer will aim to get the case dismissed, or to shoot so many holes in the prosecution that a jury won’t convict the client. In the event that the case is more substantial though, the DWI lawyer will attempt to make the circumstances as positive for the client as is realistically possible.
No Guarantee of Victory
Even the best lawyers don’t win all the time. Employing a DWI lawyer is not a guarantee that the accusations are just going to blow over and go away. On the other hand hiring an expert attorney with experience and knowledge from the city the accusations happened in, and who makes a living fighting these exact kinds of charges does increase the odds of a positive outcome more than a little.
The penalties in New York City for being caught driving while intoxicated, or with a “DWI” as they’re more commonly called, can be extensive. Anything can happen, from license suspension to jail time. The penalties for a second or third DWI or for an offender with a previous record can be even more severe, particularly if the DWI occurred in conjunction with a car accident or if any injury was caused, even if that injury was to yourself.
Hiring a good DWI lawyer can have effects that reach far beyond the immediate. A DWI lawyer’s job is to represent you to the courts in a way that is both flattering and reassuring, and to navigate the tricky landmine of legalese in your stead. Sometimes simply hiring a lawyer will help assure the court that you are as serious about the charges against you as the court itself. Rest assured, the courts take DWI charges very seriously as driving while intoxicated can lead to horrific injury or death for both the impaired and innocent parties.
Your lawyer will want the entire story, and it’s important to tell your lawyer the truth about everything. This is because if there is any part of your story that doesn’t add up, the opposition is sure to spot the discrepancy and your lawyer won’t be able to predict the outcome or prepare as well.
Keep in mind that even though having a DWI lawyer will definitely improve your chances of a lighter sentence, it is still highly likely that there will be negative consequences.
Still, a lawyer might be the difference between a 15 day sentence and probation, or a 1 year license suspension and work driving privileges. Certainly if you have already had one or more DWI’s it is in your best interest to hire a good DWI lawyer. Getting a shorter sentence is almost less important than having your charges reduced, if that is at all possible, and an experienced lawyer can help to make that happen.
If you’re facing a DWI, remember that a good lawyer will help you navigate through the minefield of legal repercussions in a way that may spare you some future legal problems. Nobody wants terrible criminal charges on their record if it can be avoided.