I am looking for an attorney who can take my DUI case to trial. However, before taking this step I would really like to consult an attorney and analyse if my case has any chances of winning at trial, coz if not I would just accept the current offer made by the DA. But each time I call an attorney's office and leave a message - I do not get a call back. Am I doing something wrong??
That's strange because attorneys generally call back at the earliest opportunity. Most attorneys on AVVO offer free consultation so try to call several attorneys and talk about your case. I think it is smart of you that you want to consult an attorney about possibility of going to trial on a DUI but first you want to talk about your case in detail before such a big decision.
Get a copy of your police report from your attorney. Make an appointment with a criminal defense trial lawyer. On the phone it is hard to discuss the details. You could also send an email. When you see him/her, show him the police report and then ask your questions. Most attorneys will travel in different counties. I have handled cases out of California, Alaska, and as far as San Diego and Sacramento. Do not post details here.
OSCAR E. TOSCANO
Los Angeles Criminal Defense Trial Lawyer
I've no idea why you are not getting return calls but myself and others on Avvo offer free consultations and you should speak to some of us. Should you want to consult with me, I do a free legal advice session every Tuesday at Antigua Cafe, 5703 N. Figueroa Street, LA 90042 between 6.30 and 8.00 p.m. or you can try my cell at 213-324-4206.
My take is different from the other responses. Since so many attorneys push "free consultations" potential clients believe they can obtain substantive advise free of charge. Generally, this is not the case. The purpose of a consultation from an attorney’s perspective is to determine if the attorney can help AND if the client can afford a reasonable fee for the necessary legal services. The last part of that equation keeps most potential clients out of the game from the start.
I receive many emails and telephone calls requesting “help” or advice. I accept probably less than 1 in 100 as clients. I do not return all of those calls (I or my staff will return most of them) for many reasons but, generally, when I do not return a call it is because the caller has left an unprofessional message or voice mail and has not indicated a willingness and ability to pay for legal services.
What is an unprofessional message? One where the caller fails to identify the nature of their call, identify themselves by first and last name, or it is apparent from context of their message they are merely looking for free advice.
You might find it hard to believe but, when I have returned calls when I know I have no interest in a case, I frequently encounter resistance and my return phone call turns out to be a bad experience for me. I have tried over and over to train my assistants to handle such calls without further discussion with me but that backfires, too. Some callers just will not take “no” for an answer gracefully.
So, for my sanity and that of my office – some calls will never be returned and some emails will never receive a response. Your call would probable be one I do not return because you have an attorney and, unless you have expressed a willingness and ability to pay for the consultation, my advice during our consultation would be simply to rely on the advice of your present attorney. Since I know you want more than that, I too probably would not return your call.
The answer to your question may depend on what you've said on the messages you left the other attorneys. As other attorneys on this post have said, most attorneys will give an initial consultation for free. At this meeting they will talk generally about your case, let you know what they can do for you and let you know how much it will cost. You seem to want the answer to two specific question: "What are my chances if I go to trial?" and "Should I take the D.A.'s deal?" It's likely a lawyer can't answer these questions without doing a significant amount of research into your case. No lawyer will do that for free. Also, it is a violation of the rules of conduct governing lawyers in California to have what' called an ex parte communication with a party known to be represented by counsel. This does not stop lawyers from talking with you if you are dissatisfied with your current attorney and want to see if a new lawyer can do a better job. But, it does mean that lawyers can't give you substantive advice about your case if they know you already have a lawyer. You do.
If the content of the voicemail messages you are leaving gives the attorneys the impression that you are trying to get something for nothing and/or are asking them for advice they are not allowed to give you, it is not surprising that they are not calling you back.
When leaving future messages, think carefully about what you are asking for and how you are asking it.
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