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Erin H. Gerstenzang
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Erin Gerstenzang’s Answers

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  • Charged with DUI less safe in Gwinnett, GA and have some questions....

    I did my field sobriety tests, blew in the breathalizer the officer gave me at the scene, and was read the complied consent card. I was never told my BAC before being arrested or given a test at the station for that matter. I also did not receive ...

    Erin’s Answer

    You should have the opportunity to get a "reset" -- a new court date to allow you an opportunity to speak with a lawyer. This is pretty routine. The initial court date is merely an arraignment - which means it is the first of a multiple court dates. You should be able to get instructions on applying for the public defender in court, or if you call in advance you may be able to complete the application in advance of that initial court date.

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  • VA. driver's license suspended on a judgement

    I was in an accident in 2004 and was charged at the scene. However, I was not at fault, so I obtained a lawyer and was found not at fault during the trial. I switched Universities and moved a few months later. In 2006, I had a judgement/lien place...

    Erin’s Answer

    Before any state will issue a new driver's license that state (in this case Virginia) will check with the National Drivers Register to determine if any other state has a suspension or "hold" on your license. It sounds like you had a Georgia license and it was suspended in connection with the civil suit in 2006. Unfortunately, you will not be eligible to get a new license in any state until you clear up the hold in Georgia.

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  • If my license was suspended in 1996 due to a ticket that i still owe how long will the suspension last if its 2014

    I now live in Ga and need to obtain a license to drive and I've been here 15 years

    Erin’s Answer

    You should be able to contact the original court that suspended your license to find out what steps you need to take to lift the "FTA" suspension (failure to appear). If you are unsure of the court, then contact the Department of Driver Services - the court should be listed on your driver's history.

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  • Accidentally passed a school bus. no ticket yet

    i was driving past a few neighborhoods and the car in front of me suddenly stepped on the breaks and zoomed off. I was right behind this car so i did the same not realizing the reason was because of the school bus on the other side of the road. I ...

    Erin’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    It is possible that you will not receive a ticket at all. However, if you do, it will likely be a different type of traffic ticket than the one you would have received had an officer witnessed the traffic violation. You may want to talk to an attorney -- even if you don't hire one -- if you do receive the ticket in the mail to make sure you understand the consequences of that ticket.

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  • How can I avoid jail time for being a habitual driver license suspended. I have received 4-5 violations for the same thing?

    I have received 4=5 violations for driving w/a suspended license

    Erin’s Answer

    You should, of course speak to an attorney. If you have already entered a guilty plea to all of the charges, then your options are limited. If one or more of those cases are still open, an attorney may be able to work out an alternative resolution. A lot of that will depend on the court you are in and the specifics of your case(s).

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  • I received a DUI for being the passenger of a parked car which a marijuana cigarette was found . Now I have a DUI? Is this legal

    I was charged a 540.00 fine and now the DMV wants me to take a 355.00 DUI class, 210.00 reinstatement fee and my insurance rate will be high. I think this is slanderous and a complete lie, I am a 60yr., a student still trying while on disability. ...

    Erin’s Answer

    Normally, a DUI investigation does not target the passenger of a vehicle and based on that fact alone, it may be worth looking into the facts of the case to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to support a DUI arrest. My concern is that it sounds like you have already entered a plea of guilty to DUI. If that is the case, in Georgia a fine for a first DUI can be as high as $1000.00. The reinstatement fee of $210.00 is standard along with the DUI School fees. You may want to consider speaking with an attorney to look into the circumstances surrounding the plea to see if the case can be reopened.

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  • What should I do about Court, if I can't make it?

    I have Court in Carrollton, Ga and I live in Cordele, Ga. I was stopped for suspended tag and I did not know it was suspended because all of the information for my car goes to my co-signers address, I was stopped after picking up my pregnant girlf...

    Erin’s Answer

    It should be fairly easy for an attorney to handle that appearance for you. However, it is not always financially feasible to hire an attorney. You may have some success calling the clerk of the court and asking for a reset due to your transportation difficulties. If you can't hire an attorney, you should ask about speaking with a public defender. If you don't get a new court date and you fail to appear, the Judge may suspend your license (FTA suspension) or issue a bench warrant so missing court (as you know) is not a good option and will likely cost you more money in the long run.

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  • What happens if you pled not guilty and the DA keeps asking for more time when all the evidence they have is a 911 call ?

    It's been a year since the innocent accord and my bother had been locked up since they have no evidence and the other party is not complying with the courts their not even pressing charges my brother had never been in trouble ever

    Erin’s Answer

    You should talk to your brother's lawyer about this - there may be a legal justification for the delay. It is not uncommon for criminal cases to take more than a year to be resolved. It is however extremely frustrating to have a loved one in jail with no clear end in sight. There are options available in some limited circumstances to expedite a criminal case, however those options may not be in your brother's best interests.

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  • Got a dui and refused the field sobriety test implied consent was never read. can this be thrown out?

    i rolled up on a georgia state patrol road block. all of their lights were off. the cop immediately ask me how much i had been drinking. i said none and then told him 5 mixed drinks. i never said i drinked alcoholic mixed drinks. i denied taking a...

    Erin’s Answer

    Based upon your description of the facts, it sounds like you should talk to an attorney about this case. Roadblocks are notoriously problematic for the prosecution and you would want to have an experienced attorney review the manner in which the roadblock was set up. When a roadblock is found to be unlawful, then the prosecutor will not normally be permitted to go forward with the DUI charge.

    It is unclear which breath test you took. If you were tested on an Intoxilyzer then the absence of implied consent would go a long way towards having that test result excluded from trial. If you blew into a portable (handheld) breath testing device, the numerical result would not normally be admissible in Georgia.

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  • Should I do the pre-trial diversion program or plead not guilty?

    I was receiving a ride back to school with two of my friends and we were pulled over for speeding. The driver was driving under a suspended license and got arrested and the officer asked us if we had alcohol in the car. I said nothing because I ha...

    Erin’s Answer

    For many people this comes down to a financial decision. You may very well be able to get the charges dismissed - especially with a lawyer's help. It sounds like the prosecutor may not have sufficient evidence against you in this case.

    That being said, not everyone is in a position to hire a private attorney or qualify for the public defender. There is nothing inherently wrong with entering the pre-trial diversion program. However, depending on what is required by the court - it could entail a lot of work. If you are unsure about your ability to complete the program successfully, then you may want to talk to an attorney about fighting the case in court.

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