The most important decision you can make is choosing the right attorney to defend your Florida DUI. This is truly the most critical decision you will make. For most people, this is the first time they will ever have had to hire a criminal defense attorney, so naturally, there will be some apprehension. As you wade through the multitude of available options, it can become overwhelming. It is important that you direct your focus to three key areas of experience when choosing your attorney.
First, your attorney’s knowledge and skill in the field of DUI defense. When interviewing attorneys, it’s important to determine if the attorney has exceptional ability and skill in the area of DUI defense. Experience is also key. Find out how much of your attorney’s practice is devoted to DUI defense and whether that includes actual litigation and trial experience. You can’t always know their level of skill and experience until you see them in the courtroom, but personally inquiring about their experience is a reliable way to measure whether or not they are right for you.
Second, find out if your attorney regularly practices in your court. You may be speaking with a highly qualified attorney, but if he does not regularly appear in Florida courtrooms, he may not be able to fight for you as effectively as a qualified attorney who is familiar with that court. Knowledge of the personalities and practices of prosecutors, judges, and jurors specific to Florida courtrooms can dramatically improve the quality of your defense. So make sure your attorney is a regular practitioner in your court.
Finally, when you meet with attorneys, it is critical that you evaluate the trustworthiness of the person with whom you are speaking. You will be relying upon the advice of your attorney to make decisions that will affect you, your future, and your family. Make sure that advice comes from a trustworthy source. If you are not comfortable with your attorney, you have the wrong attorney. As attorneys, we are trained to zealously represent individuals in their best interests. The right attorney will adopt your issues as their own. Make sure the attorney you are hiring can and will do just that.
The results of hiring proper representation can have consequences that affect you and your family for years to come. Take the time to make an informed decision. Consider your specific needs. Your life literally could depend upon it.