Got a Dui in skagit county beat the hearing..but feel like lawer is not doing anything for me..

Asked almost 2 years ago - Seattle, WA

i got a dui in skagit county and had the hearing and it was dismissed. due to wrong full arrest.
but for the criminal charges my lawer says we cant beat them....im a automotive tech and need my license.i feel like my lawer is not doing his job what should i do.....can anyone help
thanks

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Linda Medeiros Callahan

    Pro

    Contributor Level 16

    9

    Lawyers agree

    1

    Answered . Your question is confusing but I think you are saying that you won your driver's license hearing based on an unlawful arrest, but your lawyer feels the criminal case in not winnable.

    First, in a licensing hearing, the decision-maker can only rely upon the police report if the officer who arrested you was not subpoenaed. Probably, the officer made an error on his report, or maybe missed faxing a page to DOL--something of that nature, that couldn't be corrected without the officer's testimony. So, you won.

    But in the criminal court, the decision-maker (judge or jury) cannot decide the case based on the police report. They have to hear live testimony. Therefore, the officer can now correct whatever was wrong with the report, if anything.

    On the other hand, if you won the licensing hearing because of a legal argument, it may be that your lawyer, if familiar with the judges in the jurisdiction, has a pretty good idea, based on past history, that the judge will not rule in your favor on the legal argument made in your license hearing.

    I strongly suggest that you make an appointment to talk with your lawyer about how you are feeling, and give him a chance to explain what his strategy is for your case and what your options are. And give him credit for having won the DOL hearing if that's what he won--because they are NOT easy to win.

    If you are still not satisfied, and you've paid a retainer, it's fair to ask for a portion of that to be refunded so you can hire a new lawyer.

    DUI cases are tough to win because of the strong negative feelings people have about drunk-driving. People really fear drunk drivers because they feel personally threatened by them. Many jurors have a bias against people accused of this crime so deep that it is nearly impossible to get a fair trial on a DUI case in this state. Even judges who are fair and unbiased do not want to look like they are going easy on drunk drivers. For all these reasons, the vast majority of DUI cases are plea-bargained, often to a lesser charge.

    Hope that everything turns out for you. Good luck.

    This answer is my personal opinion, offered for informational purposes only. It is not a legal opinion, nor is it... more
  2. Sean D Mckee

    Contributor Level 10

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I would first advise you to sit down and speak with your lawyer. He or she most likely does have experience with that court and every court is different. Next I would advise you to listen to Linda Callahan. She literally wrote the book on DUI defense.

    That being said, winning a DOL hearing and winning a criminal case are very different. The big difference is that the hearing is based solely on the police reports. When you try to make the same argument in court the prosecutor will often call the officer to the stand and they will fill in enough gaps to defeat the motion. Additionally if you argue a motion in court the prosecutor will typically pull your offer and then you are headed into a trial. I don't know what the facts of your case are but whatever they are I can almost guarantee you that trial is a bad place to be. Juries hate DUI cases. Guilty until proven innocent just seems to be the way it is with DUI's.

    "Beating" a charge outright is very difficult and risky. A lawyer is generally trying to get you in the least amount of trouble with the least amount of risk. It's not often that a lawyer will tell you to bet it all and go all in trying for a dismissal or a not guilty verdict.

    One of the jobs of an attorney is to communicate with you, to explain what's going on in your case and to make you feel as comfortable as possible. If you aren't getting that then you might want to find an attorney with a more personal style. Some people don't wan't a million phone calls they just want to hand it over to a lawyer and say, "take care of this." Lawyers are just regular people, some you'll get along with and others you won't. Shop around until you are satisfied.

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