You look into the rearview mirror, and seemingly out of nowhere, you see red and blue lights coming toward you. You pull over to the side of the road, and your heart beats heavily. You know you’ve had one too many drinks tonight, and you feel panicked.
Unfortunately, your worst nightmare becomes a reality. The police smell alcohol emanating from your breath, and you’re forced to take a field sobriety test. Then, after police determine that you have failed the test, you feel the cold handcuffs envelop your wrists, and you are taken into custody.
You have been arrested for and charged with driving under the influence, or DWI. That makes you one of more than one million individuals arrested each year for DWI.
So, you got a DWI — now what?
Here’s a rundown on four things you need to do after getting a DWI.
Let’s get started.
1. First, Find a Top-Tier DWI Attorney
After authorities release you from jail, your first priority should be to find a seasoned DWI attorney. Why? Because the right attorney will provide you with the best defense, thus increasing your chances of winning your DWI case.
Your attorney will spend time investigating your DWI case and will also ensure that your legal rights are safeguarded.
In addition, your attorney will work with prosecutors and the judge to increase your chances of getting your charge dropped/dismissed.
2. Appear in Court
After securing a solid lawyer, you’ll need to appear in court on time, as this will prevent you from getting into more trouble with the legal system. As a general rule of thumb, your first court date will be about a month after your arrest date.
After you are in court, the attorney you have hired might suggest that you accept a plea deal, as this will help you to avoid a DWI conviction. As part of such a deal, you would likely plead guilty. In return, you may get a lighter charge or sentence, which means you could avoid a trial, jail time, or other consequences.
3. Obey the Court
If you end up being convicted of a DWI or a lesser charge, you’ll need to closely follow the conditions of your sentencing. This can include:
- Serving any jail time
- Paying court-ordered fines and fees
- Completing required classes
- Installing an ignition interlock device
- Carrying SR-22 Insurance
4. Don’t Risk Driving
In the majority of DWI cases, your driver’s license will be revoked for a period of time depending upon how many prior DWI’s you’ve had, your BAC level, and the extent of any injuries you may have caused if you were involved in a DWI related accident.
If this is your situation, be sure to adhere to this requirement. If you get caught driving on a revoked license you’ll be facing serious charges.
Closer to the end of your suspension or revocation period, contact the motor vehicle department to start the process of completing your driver’s license reinstatement. You’ll also need to prove that you have the required insurance, as well as pay any reinstatement fines you’re given.
Scott M. Brown & Associates Can Help!
Being arrested for driving under the influence can be extremely stressful. The good news is that you don’t have to fight this potentially life-altering criminal charge by yourself.
The experienced team at Scott M. Brown & Associates is here to defend you. We’ll help you fight for the best outcome given the circumstances of your DWI case.
Call our Pearland location at (832)-956-1048 or Angleton location at (979)-472-7012 today!