5 Things You Need To Do After A DUI Arrest
The campaign against driving under the influence or DUI has been relentless over the last few years.
Still, more than a million people get arrested for DUI in the United States every year. It’s a crime in every state, and police don’t have any qualms about bringing you in once they decide that you are, indeed, intoxicated while behind the wheel.
If you ever find yourself facing the possibility of a DUI case, don’t panic or do something rash that will only make things worse for you. Once the police officer handcuffs you and brings you to the station, don’t forget to do the things listed below:
- Call a DUI lawyer.
Technically, you can call any attorney, but it would be in your best interest to contact a lawyer who specializes in DUI law. Not only do they know DUI statutes like the back of their hand, but they are also very familiar with the procedures involved in DUI cases. Whatever the latest requirements field sobriety tests, blood draws, and breath tests, a DUI attorney would be updated on them. Any issues with the way authorities performed them on you, and that could mean a favorable outcome for you in the end.
- Take a chemical test, or don’t.
When a police officer pulls you over and asks you to undergo a field sobriety test or FST, remember that you can refuse them because they tend to be subjective, and therefore unreliable most of the time.
Chemical tests after your arrest, however, are mandatory in all states. You can still refuse the test, of course, but you need to know that doing so would mean you’re willing to accept the punishment that comes with refusal.
If you’re arrested for DUI in Arizona or California, refusing a chemical test that will accurately determine your blood alcohol concentration or BAC is punishable with license suspension for 12 months. That is a lot compared to the 90-day license suspension you will get if you comply with the chemical test and your BAC is above .08%.
- Post bail right away.
Once you’re arrested and you want to get out of jail as soon as possible, you might want to check the stationhouse bail schedule and pay the amount set for your offense. Then again, if this is your first DUI arrest and you didn’t figure in a car crash and hurt or killed anyone, the judge may release on your own recognizance or O.R., which means you can be trusted to appear in any court proceeding related to your DUI. Your bail will also be waived.
- File a license suspension hearing petition with the MVD.
If you want to keep driving in Arizona, you have to request the MVD for a license suspension hearing within 15 days of your arrest. That way, the suspension of your driver’s license will be put on hold until the hearing. You can submit your petition online to the MVD Executive Hearing Office. You can also fax or mail in your request.
- Prepare for your defense with your DUI attorney.
You have to work closely with your DUI lawyer so you can prepare for your defense. Your DUI attorney is capable of building a defense that may get your case dismissed before it goes to trial, but he or she is going to need your full cooperation. Your DUI attorney will assail the evidence the prosecution will present against you, or question the way the arresting officers brought you in, among other things.
Should your case go to trial, trust your DUI attorney to do everything to get an acquittal. He or she can also work on a deal with the prosecutor for a lesser charge, especially if there is substantial evidence against you. Everything your DUI attorney will do will be in your best interest, so don’t hesitate about contacting one once you get arrested for a DUI.