Learn How to Get the Best Legal Help After a DWI Arrest
I’ve been charged with a DWI. How do I find the best legal help available?
New Hampshire’s driving while intoxicated (DWI) laws are stricter than ever before. Police officers have made DWI prevention one of their top priorities, and social organizations, like Mothers Against Drunk Driving, have brought these issues to the forefront of society’s attention, in addition to lobbying or even harsher penalties for those convicted of DWI related crimes. Even within the last 5 years, New Hampshire’s drunk driving laws have been revolutionized.
What should I do after being arrested for a DWI?
Upon being arrested for a DWI in New Hampshire, the first step you should take is to gather as much information as is available about your arrest, the charges leveled against you, and your specific case. It is imperative to obtain a copy of your case’s police report if you have not been provided with one. Next, you must familiarize yourself with all aspects of blood test, Breathalyzer, and field sobriety test processes. Such information will become particularly important once your case starts.
After all of the important information has been gathered, your next step should be to employ the services of a professional and skilled New Hampshire DWI lawyer. This specialized type of lawyer will review your case and determine the best course of action. If the means to do so are available, it is always highly recommended that a DWI defendant hire private counsel. Your DWI attorney will be able to give you an informed opinion about the likelihood of conviction and whether or not it will be in your best interest to accept a plea bargain or plead guilty.
This is my first DWI offense. How likely is it I’ll be convicted?
In the state of New Hampshire, guilty verdicts are quite common for first time DWI offenders. Although this is the most common outcome, it does not mean it is impossible for a defendant to win their case. There are two primary factors that most commonly determine the outcome of a first time offender’s case:
1. Your blood alcohol content (BAC) is higher than .08%. If your BAC levels are higher than .08%, it will be difficult for you to win your case. Across the United States, the conviction rate for individuals who have a BAC level of .08% or higher is 91%. If your BAC levels are higher than this standard, you must seek legal representation as quickly as possible. It is imperative to bear in mind that, in the state of New Hampshire, the higher your BAC levels are, the stiffer the penalties you face will be.
2. The evidence is irrefutable. If the police officer who arrested you has video recordings of your field sobriety tests, or there are witnesses who will testify to the fact that you were driving or behaving erratically, then this type of evidence will be classified as “irrefutable”. Irrefutable evidence makes it much more difficult to achieve a not guilty verdict.
What do I need to look for an NH DWI attorney?
When searching for legal counsel to retain for your DWI case, there are several things you should look for. First and foremost, you need to select a lawyer who is intimately familiar with New Hampshire’s DWI laws. Their expertise will be enormously beneficial to you if your case goes to trial. Secondly, you will want to employ the services of a DWI lawyer who has an extensive track record and experience in trying DWI cases. The more experienced your lawyer is, the better equipped he or she will be to analyze your case and assist you in making decisions that will have an impact on your future.
If I plan to plead guilty, do I need to hire a DWI attorney?
In order to avoid the hassle of a trial, many first time DWI offenders chose to plead guilty. If this is the decision you feel is right for you, you technically do not have to hire an NH DWI lawyer, but it is strongly recommended that you do. New Hampshire’s penalties for first time DWI offenders are straightforward and simple to understand, but your lawyer will be able to analyze your case and determine if there are any flaws in the prosecution’s case. If flaws exist, it may be possible to win your case or have it dismiss altogether. If this is not possible, your lawyer can negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor that minimizes the severity of the consequences you must deal with.
Do I need to attend all legal hearings related to my DWI case?
If your DWI case goes to trial or requires multiple hearings, it is in your best interests to attend each legal hearing and court session related to your case. It is a common misconception that offenders do not have to attend these legal hearings because their lawyer will be in court to act at their representative. If you are not present during your trial, it will be detrimental to your case because the judge will believe that you are not taking the charges against you seriously. It is not uncommon for this to lead to guilty verdicts and stiffer sentences.
What punishments will I face in New Hampshire for a first time DWI conviction?
If you are convicted of a first time DWI conviction in the Commonwealth of New Hampshire, the possible punishments you face include:
§ A jail sentence of up to 10 days
§ A monetary fine ranging from $500.00 to $750.00
§ Suspension of your driver’s license for a minimum of 9 months to upwards of 2 years
§ Completion of an alcohol treatment program
These penalties become significantly harsher for repeat offenders.
If you have been arrested and charged with a DWI in New Hampshire, contact our law offices to day to speak with an experienced NH DWI attorney about your case.