All Lawyers are created equal, right?
Having a license to practice law ALLOWS a lawyer to practice any type of law; however, it doesn’t necessarily give them the expertise that AFFORDS them the ability to do the job correctly.
There are several points to take into consideration when hiring a lawyer to handle your DUI case. These are not all-inclusive, but they are a good starting point.
- Don’t hire the cheapest lawyer you find…you get what you pay for.
We certainly are not the cheapest nor are we the most expensive law firm in the metro area; however, our fees are directly proportionate to our experience and expertise. An attorney knows the value of their service. An attorney that quotes a very low fee is telling you that they don’t believe their service is worth very much. This could be because they only dabble in that area of the law or their level of experience with your type of case is scarce at best. Your legal issue is the most important thing going on in your life right now; don’t go with the budget lawyer; you have no idea what you will end up with.
- Ask them about their background in DUI law and whether they have experience trying cases.
An attorney should be quick to recite his or her resume. Any trial lawyer can recount for you their recent track record, basic facts of those cases, where they got their training from, etc. If you ask an attorney about their last 3 trials they had in front of a jury and they look at you like a deer in headlights, this is not a good sign. You can always count on an experienced lawyer to be ready, willing and able to brag about their recent successes. Not necessarily the best trait to have; however, you can certainly use it to your benefit. Also, DUI law is a very particular area of the law. Phil Pilgrim used to prosecute these cases and also trained law enforcement on DUI detection and enforcement. 70% of his practice is focused on this area of the law. There are many other lawyers that focus on DUI law; however, there are 10x as many that lack the same experience. This site is full of information that any attorney who regularly defends DUI cases should be familiar with. If they don’t sound like seasoned-experienced DUI lawyers, they probably aren’t.
- Interview at least three attorneys, even if it is over the phone.
Take your time and speak to several prospective attorneys after doing your own research first. Then ask the tough questions. If they start making promises to you in your first conversation about what will happen with your case (and it seems too good to be true) they are likely lying (overselling) to you in order to get your money. Talk to as many lawyers as you can but don’t let this process delay your hiring of a lawyer too long. It is still imperative to hire an attorney as soon as possible to protect all of your legal rights.
- Make sure your prospective attorney takes a burden off when you swipe your card or write a check.
When hiring a lawyer, it’s not like a normal purchase. You don’t get to walk out with a new electronic device or drive away in a new vehicle. The only thing a lawyer sells you is peace of mind that your issues will be handled. Most people that come into our office carry the burden of their troubles with them all day because they don’t know what to do or what to expect. A lawyer should be able to take that burden from you (as much as possible) and allow you to rest easy that everything is being taken care of. We tell our clients when they leave our office, TRY NOT TO WORRY ABOUT IT…if there is something for you to worry about, we will call you and tell you to do so. If you are not getting that feeling, leave and do not look back.
If you have been searching for a lawyer with the experience to handle your DUI case, call our office today. Do not hesitate!