Helping Clients with Human Problems Underlying Legal Problems.
Independence Day is a holiday truly dedicated to national celebration. Outdoor BBQs, time with friends and family, fireworks – it’s hard not to have a good time. And these days, as our country seems more divided than ever, coming together to celebrate our country as a whole couldn’t have come at a better time. Team USA!
For many people, part of the celebration yesterday involved throwing back a few beers or glasses of champagne. Most people who partied yesterday made it home safely (although undoubtedly, some people drove home that shouldn’t have). But the Fourth of July in Colorado does have its fair share of DUIs/DWAIs, leading to a spike in my DUI defense case load each year. This year, 88 state agencies executed on an enforcement period that ran from June 29 through July 5, mixing checkpoints, increased patrols, and other methods for detecting and punishing impaired driving.
I’ve been handling Front Range DUI defense cases for years now. I take my job in this context very seriously and not only because my clients deserve the best defense possible – which they do – but also because DUI/DWAI cases give me an opportunity to take a more preventative, holistic approach to my legal defense practice. My unique approach to DUI/DWAI defense gives me the opportunity to help people in a way that most attorneys don’t – or chose not to.
Educating First-Time Offenders on Future Consequences
Lots of people find themselves with a DUI/DWAI charge. For many of the first-time offenders who walk into my office, there isn’t much behind their conviction beyond poor judgment and bad luck. And by that, I mean that just because someone has been charged with a DUI/DWAI doesn’t necessarily mean that they suffer from a substance abuse disorder or have a history of drunk driving. I also mean that not everyone who is charged with is actually guilty of DUI/DWAI.
Nevertheless, I take the time to educate my first-offender clients on the consequences of additional DUI charges, as any good attorney should. Once you get past the first offense (which is bad enough in terms of cost, time, and penalties), it only gets worse from there. Literally.
- Fees and penalties rise
- Community service requirements increase
- Jail time (and there will be mandatory jail) gets longer
- Driving privileges become even more restricted
- Probation periods lengthen
And naturally, the non-legal consequences of a DUI/DWAI only get worse with second and third offenses, also.
Treating the Reasons behind Recidivism is Just Good DUI Defense Strategy
Repeat business is always appreciated, don’t get me wrong. When clients come back to me for help with other issues that may have arisen in their life, this shows that they trust me and know they can rely on me to help them. It’s generally a satisfying feeling, but my repeat DUI clients are a bit different. My hope for repeat offender clients is that they will never see me again – or any DUI attorney – because they will never be in the position of having to mount another DUI defense. When these folks come walking back through my door, then, it’s not a positive thing for anyone involved.
Sure, people make the same mistakes twice – or more – and recidivism with DUIs is common because people fall off the wagon many times on their way to sober living. When DUI charges begin accumulating, though, this can signal an underlying substance abuse problem. And I always talk about this with clients. Make no mistake, I’m not a healthcare or mental health provider. I cannot diagnose people with anything other than legal problems, nor would I attempt to do so. But there are things I can do to help someone battling their own disease.
I can help clients find a counselor or an addiction specialist. I can steer clients towards talking about treatment as a means to reduce the legal penalty of their current offense. I can encourage clients to invest in long-term treatment as a method of preventing yet another offense.
Acknowledging the human problems behind the legal problems – Let Justie get Justice for you!
If you or someone you know was charged with a DUI/DWAI recently, don’t wait to contact an attorney. A good DUI defense attorney is priceless in navigating through the DUI/DWAI system. The process moves fast, and if you aren’t a few steps ahead of it, it will leave you behind. Contact me online here, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call me at (970) 670-0738.
Don’t settle for just any attorney (even if he or she is the first to call you back or the cheapest). Finding a DUI defense attorney who is going to approach your case from a human standpoint and not just a legal standpoint is also important. You deserve to be treated as the whole person that you are, not just a DUI case number.