Answering the most frequently asked questions about DWI court.
Heading to court can be an intimidating and nerve-racking experience for anyone. Whether it’s your first time entering the court house, or you’ve had the misfortune of being there before, the seriousness and severity of the matter can hit you head on as soon as you walk through the doors, causing you to feel completely unprepared for what’s ahead.
While each court experience can differ depending on the terms of your arrest, there is usually anywhere from a handful of people to as many as 50 people packed into your courtroom. Usually, each of these people will be facing various criminal charges, including driving while intoxicated (DWI). However, there is one single thing that can relate each and every one of these defendants-they all want to make a good impression on the judge.
Whether or not you think it’s fair, as soon as you enter court, you will be judged on everything from the clothes you are wearing and your overall demeanor to your criminal history. Therefore, how you choose to act and present yourself may directly impact the feelings of the judge and the direct outcome of your court case.
Because of this, we have put together a list of some of the most frequently asked questions about DWI court. Knowing the answer to some of these important questions will not only help you feel more prepared for your case, but it will also help you to make a better impression on the judge.
“If I intend to plead guilty, then why do I need a lawyer?”
Even if you were caught with a blood alcohol content (BAC) level well over .08 and you were found driving unsafely, an experienced DWI lawyer may still be able to help minimize your legal problems and improve the outcome of your court cause, allowing you to move forward from your mistake and not have it affect your future. If you risk representing yourself and simply pleading guilty to all of the charges, you may be accepting consequences that you do not deserve. “How should I address the judge?” When speaking to your judge in court, you should always stand up straight and look them directly in the eye. Lack of eye contact can often be taken as an indicator that you are not telling the whole truth. You should also speak loudly so that the judge can hear you, and always use proper speaking terms when addressing them, such as “your honor,” “judge,” or “sir/ma’am. “How long will I be there for?” If you have hired a private DWI lawyer, there is a good chance that you will be out of court relatively quickly. This is because private lawyers typically go before public defenders or self-represented defendants.
“How long will a DWI arrest stay on my record?”
Unfortunately, if you are convicted of a DWI, your charges will stay on your record forever. However, if you are found not guilty, you may be able to have your DWI charge “expunged” from your record, erasing it permanently. If this is the case, no employer, police officer or prosecutor will be able to find evidence of the expunged charge.
Because DWI cases are such a serious matter, it is vital that you hire an experienced DWI lawyer to handle your case. As long as you do, you can ensure that your case will be handled properly and that you will receive the best possible outcome for your DWI charge.