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Monterey & Salinas DUI Attorneyʼs Consumer Guide
  to Surviving A DUI With Or Without A DUI Defense
 Attorney (This Guide ...
2)      Phase 2 – After First Court Appearance and Until the
           DMV and Court Case are Decided (over)
   3)      P...
attorney – key word is qualified – NOT a sales pitch
       attorney (see my other document on getting the best
       DUI...
What I normally have my clients do (if I donʼt do it for them),
is request a DMV hearing by calling the San Jose #, NOT th...
5.     Finally, write down the date and the time you
                      talked with the DMV – just in case they deny
  ...
7.      You know you were under the influence or at least
               .08 or more (assuming you were 21 or over at the
...
5.     You have a career, or license, that will be
               negatively impacted (Doctor, Nurse, Teacher, Pilot,
    ...
a. Itʼs important these be planned correctly so they
                can be counted towards any jail time
   5.        Esp...
2.      Decide if there is any benefit to hiring an attorney
               (i.e. you need to avoid jail, save money, time...
*IF YOU THINK YOU MIGHT NEED AN ATTORNEY,
PLEASE LOOK FOR MY Consumer Guide… “How To
Choose A DUI Lawyer in California”…In...
a limited # of cases (less than 5 personal DUI cases a
month) using his Outcome Focused Defense System. If you
are interes...
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Monterey & Salinas Dui Attorney Guide To Surviving Your Dui

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Monterey & Salinas DUI Attorney’s Consumer Guide to Surviving A DUI With Or Without A DUI Defense Attorney

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Monterey & Salinas Dui Attorney Guide To Surviving Your Dui

  1. 1. Monterey & Salinas DUI Attorneyʼs Consumer Guide to Surviving A DUI With Or Without A DUI Defense Attorney (This Guide was Made For Those Arrested for DUI in Monterey County) Part One – Draft 1 Part 1 of a 3 part series (for publication in Spring 2010). By Matthew Williamson, Monterey DUI Lawyer The purpose of this guide is 3 fold (youʼll notice I love 3ʼs): First: Help you through a DUI arrest in Monterey County (including DUIs in Monterey, Salinas, Marina, Seaside, Pacific Grove, Fort Ord, etc) by giving you good, practical information. Second – Give you a background of when it is important to get a dui attorney and when you may not really benefit from one (I personally turn away more cases then I take because itʼs not always beneficial to hire one) Third – Give you some practical tips and along the way for your DUI arrest from someone that has been helping people for over a decade. Let me be upfront with you, I do NOT normally advise anyone to go to court without an attorney – but I do understand the current state of the economy, and the misleading marketing by other lawyers, hence the creation of this guide. You can divide a DUI case into 3 distinct phases: 1) Phase 1 – After Arrest, Before First Court Appearance (usually in Salinas or Sometimes King City) – If it is a Misdemeanor, court is usually at 8:15 a.m. Plan on arriving at least 15 minutes early to find parking. Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  2. 2. 2) Phase 2 – After First Court Appearance and Until the DMV and Court Case are Decided (over) 3) Phase 3 – After the Court Case and DMV Case Decided Each phase requires different tactics depending on the outcome you are looking for (Iʼll address each phase after the common goals of my clients). Iʼve found after representing and advising literally 1000ʼs of DUI arrestees in Monterey, Salinas, Marina, Carmel, Seaside, King City, etc. (basically all of Monterey County) that most people are looking for one of several outcomes. 1. Most are wanting to mitigate the damage – they know they were probably over the limit, want to take responsibility, but want to lesson the negative impact (save on insurance, avoid jail, save money etc.) 2. Some want/need to get off completely (doesnʼt matter if they are innocent or not, they just want or need to be found not guilty) – examples would be a truck driver (1st offense they lose their California Class A completely for 1 year, and on a 2nd offense they lose it forever – even if they were in their own personal car at the time 3. Some want to plead guilty and get this behind them as soon as possible. 4. Some have outcomes/goals that are very specific to their situation - avoid the driving suspension time to take their kids to school, medical appointments, etc. Phase 1: What do you do? VERY first thing you do is request a DMV hearing, preferably AFTER talking to a qualified Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  3. 3. attorney – key word is qualified – NOT a sales pitch attorney (see my other document on getting the best DUI lawyer in Monterey or Salinas – picking the right DUI defense attorney is almost as important as the facts to your case…but I digress). Be very careful who you talk with – there are even local attorneys that list themselves as “Expert” attorneys, although they have very few jury trials and may not have even won a single one of those – please watch out – some newer attorneys look very experienced because of their age, when in fact, they are relatively new at practicing (this is their 2nd career or it took the literally years to pass the bar – ask them when they graduated from law school and when they finally practiced the bar). BIG NOTICE: You normally only have 10 CALENDAR days from the date of the arrest to request your hearing (as described below) – or you will most likely lose your right to drive, EVEN if you have a great DUI case. PRACTICAL POINTER: If you know you are going to plead guilty, going to go with the public defender, or represent yourself – I do NOT recommend requesting a hearing. WHY? Only a small % of those representing themselves actually win their DMV hearing (last stats I read stated is was around 4%). If youʼre going to the public defender they do not handle the DMV case because it is considered Civil and not criminal in nature and therefore you are not entitled to a court appointed attorney. If you are going to just plead guilty, the guilty plea usually causes an automatic loss with the DMV case. HOW TO REQUEST YOUR HEARING Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  4. 4. What I normally have my clients do (if I donʼt do it for them), is request a DMV hearing by calling the San Jose #, NOT the number on the form given in Sacramento (the # on the form given is one of the many DMV traps). The # for cases in Monterey and Santa Cruz County is currently (408) 229- 7100 – NOT the 916 area code # on your temporary license. When you call: 1. Get the name of the person you talked with 2. Request an in-person hearing, in Seaside preferably (currently – this is subject to change) – do NOT let them talk you into a telephone hearing…why?...because itʼs easier for them to say no to you on the phone, then it is in person. Also, if you need to question a police officer, itʼs easier to judge their truthfulness in person then for them to reading hidden notes on the other side of a phone. 3. Request a copy of “discovery” – this is the evidence they plan to use against you (you want this in advance to help present the best defense to keeping your license) 4. Request a stay of execution (I know this sounds terrible, like someone is going to be shot) – this is so you can continue to drive (assuming you were legally able to drive before you were arrested) until the outcome of the court or DMV case. Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  5. 5. 5. Finally, write down the date and the time you talked with the DMV – just in case they deny it in the future, you can show your phone bill. NEXT STEP The next step is deciding if you want a private attorney to go with or for you to court (yes, they can appear on your behalf and you donʼt have to go to court in many cases). My advice (but remember, I am an attorney….but I donʼt take a lot of cases anymore) is that it is usually a good idea to at least consult with an attorney (see my Consumer Guide… “How To Choose A DUI Lawyer in California”…Including The 7 Dirty Secrets of DUI Attorney Advertising They Donʼt Want You To Know) WHEN YOU MAY NOT WANT TO HIRE AN ATTORNEY Here is when you may not want an attorney: If all the following are true, then you may not want an attorney: 1. This is your first offense for DUI. 2. No accident was involved. 3. No other charges were brought. 4. You can you go without any driving at all (not even a restricted license) for approximately 6 weeks (I know it says 4, but on a practical level it takes a few weeks for paperwork much of the time). 5. Your alcohol level is under .15. 6. You are not on probation for anything else. Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  6. 6. 7. You know you were under the influence or at least .08 or more (assuming you were 21 or over at the time) 8. You donʼt mind appearing in front of the judge. 9. A DUI on your record is not going to cause you a lot of problems in your career, or with any license you might have. If all of the above are true, then you may want to just have your case reviewed by an attorney, but not necessarily hire them, unless they can show true value. WHEN TO HIRE A MONTEREY DUI ATTORNEY If any of the below are true – then get an attorney and make it a good one: 1. Itʼs a multiple offense (especially a 3rd offense or greater – a third offense is a minimum of 120 days in jail and usually significantly more) – a good attorney may be able to help you avoid actual jail time. 2. An accident was involved – especially if someone was injured (if injury involved, itʼs very common for the case to be charged as a felony) – even if you are guilty; many times a good attorney is the difference between a felony (and possible prison) on your record and a misdemeanor (and avoiding prison). 3. You alcohol level was .15 or great and ESPECIALLY if it were .20 or greater (this can lead to longer and therefore more expensive DUI classes). 4. Other charges were brought (child endangerment, resisting arrest, etc.) Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  7. 7. 5. You have a career, or license, that will be negatively impacted (Doctor, Nurse, Teacher, Pilot, etc.) – careers can be lost or protected with the choice of attorney THE RULE FOR DECIDING TO GO WITH AN ATTORNEY Mattʼs Golden Rule of Choosing an Attorney: Will the attorney provide you the benefits you need at the price that is appropriate for your situation. In other words – what is the cost-benefit analysis. BEHIND THE SCENES SECRET (See my Consumer Guide… “How To Choose A DUI Lawyer in California”…Including The 7 Dirty Secrets of DUI Attorney Advertising They Donʼt Want You To Know*) If the attorney advertises price in a direct mail piece (direct mail itself is not bad), donʼt go with them. Other Phase 1 Considerations 1. Consider whether you need to take pictures / video of where you were followed by the police (if that occurred), and driving before the scene changes (construction, weather, pruning of trees, etc.) 2. Consider whether there is a benefit in starting the DUI class early – and if so, which one should you take? 3. Insurance planning – believe it or not, there are ways to attempt to save on insurance, but they need to be planned for. 4. If needed, pre-court sentencing planning to avoid jail – jail alternatives – treatment programs, etc. Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  8. 8. a. Itʼs important these be planned correctly so they can be counted towards any jail time 5. Especially in a multiple offense, planning for the first day in court – this can make a major difference (Iʼve seen someone that should have gotten at least 120 days, get 5 with the right planning). 6. Finding out who your judge is and whether you should file a motion to get rid of the judge before the time expires for doing do (in the past this has been the difference between doing a few hours of community service type work and doing weeks in actual jail). 7. Gathering evidence for the DMV case if it is going to occur before the court case MYTH #1: I didnʼt have alcohol, so I canʼt be convicted of a DUI, because I wasnʼt Drunk Driving in Monterey. FACT: DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence (it can be influence of prescription medications, illegal drugs, pot, etc. – not just alcohol) SUMMARY (of Part 1) In phase #1 1. Request a DMV hearing (either yourself or through an attorney) – if you need to keep your protect your right to drive (see how to do so above) OR if you have a bad case and need a chance to lock the officer into his/her story before they have time to discuss it with the governmentʼs lawyer and possibly change it Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  9. 9. 2. Decide if there is any benefit to hiring an attorney (i.e. you need to avoid jail, save money, time, or your license) 3. Decide what things are needed to be done before your first appearance (use the 7 point checklist started above for brainstorming. If you have any questions and are thinking you might need an attorney, feel free to contact me at my office at (831) 657- 0100. Remember, I may not take your case, but I can probably lead you in the right direction. In Part Two: I canʼt address every situation, but Iʼm going to talk about several common issues: Jail – Whether you are in danger or not of going to jail depends on several factors. They biggest three are a) is this a first offense or a multiple offense, b) was an accident involved, c) are any other charges being brought. Fighting the Case: Negotiating the Case: What to considering when representing yourself in a plea deal. and more… Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  10. 10. *IF YOU THINK YOU MIGHT NEED AN ATTORNEY, PLEASE LOOK FOR MY Consumer Guide… “How To Choose A DUI Lawyer in California”…Including The 7 Dirty Secrets of DUI Attorney Advertising They Donʼt Want You To Know – See my website www.MontereyDUI.com for a copy. BIOGRAPHY Matthew Williamson did his undergraduate work at California State University Chico where he graduated with honors from the pre-law program. He then enrolled in law school, graduated in 1996, immediately took and passed the California Bar Exam, and opened his practice in Monterey December 1, 1996. He has practiced DUI Law in Monterey County since 1997. Heʼs been a paid presenter on DUI defense and has put on several elite seminars relating to DUI defense, along with producing and publishing several DUI defense informational audio CDʼs and DVDs. He has advised 1000ʼs of people arrested for DUIʼs in both Monterey and Santa Cruz County – including taking numerous cases through jury, as well as court trial. He runs his practice on a personally developed and tested Outcome Focused Defense System, which he has taught and continues to teach to attorneys throughout California. He is not only trained & certified to give Field Sobriety Tests, but certified to teach otherʼs to give them (less than ½ of 1% of DUI attorneys in California have this certification). Although he no longer does exclusively DUIs – he limits his practice to 3 main areas of the law and takes on Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI
  11. 11. a limited # of cases (less than 5 personal DUI cases a month) using his Outcome Focused Defense System. If you are interested in his services you may contact him at (831) 657-0100. Disclaimer: Not a substitute for a good dui attorney’s specific advice to your case. For Advice (831) 657-0100 © 2010 Monterey Salinas DUI Attorney Guide to Surviving Your DUI

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