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BloomLegalTV: Choosing the Right DWI Lawyer

Posted on Jun 15, 2011 in Bloom Legal TV

Disclaimer: Nothing should be taken as actual legal advice. Each and every individual case is different and you should really seek your own attorney to evaluate each and every case.

One of the most common questions submitted to Bloom Legal is,”How do I know I have the right DUI or DWI attorney?” This is a really good question. One of the most important things when you get arrested for a DWI or DUI, or any time you seek legal assistance, is to use a reference; find a friend or someone you know who has used this particular lawyer before.

The first thing you should do is meet with the attorney face to face, and see how you feel about them and their practice. You're going to be spending lots of time with that attorney for the next few weeks, if not months or years, so you want to make sure that you feel comfortable.

There are certain things to look for when selecting a DUI or a DWI attorney:

Make sure your attorney actually practices that type of law. I see attorneys all the time that are in completely different fields representing people for DUIs and DWIs, and I know this because they call Bloom Legal and ask, “What do I need to do on this?” And I say, “Well, you should tell your client he should have hired a DWI attorney (not an insurance defense attorney, or not a maritime attorney, or all the different kinds of attorneys that are out there).” So it's important to find out, and ask your attorney, “Do you practice DUI?” “Have you defended a DWI case before? What were the results?” Those seem like obvious questions, but a lot of times people don't think to ask them.

If your attorney puts up billboards all over town claiming he's the best personal injury lawyer in the city, and he says he’s taking on your DWI as a favor, that's probably not the right person for you. You should find someone who does have some specific experience with DUIs.

In addition to finding an attorney who actually specializes in DWIs, it also matters where you were convicted. If you live here in Louisiana and your DWI is in New Orleans, find a representative who regularly goes to the New Orleans court, and knows where it is. If you're in Shreveport, find a lawyer that's in Shreveport. And that's not to say that a Shreveport lawyer can't handle a case in New Orleans and vice versa, but you may want someone that actually has experience dealing with that particular district attorney/city attorney in that particular jurisdiction.

In addition, has the attorney ever had any specialized training? Is he a member of the DUI National Defense College? Has he taken courses or CLE (Continuing Legal Education courses) on DWI defense? There are a lot of complicated issues and facts to go over when dealing with a DWI. This is not case where you want a lawyer who's shooting from the hip; you want someone who has some specialty training.

Those are basically the important things to consider when trying to pick a DWI lawyer. You want to feel comfortable with him. You want to make sure they are amoral when it comes to your particular offense. Get someone with specialty training, someone who can show you a certificate that he has BHT Certification training, that he understand the concepts of blood alcohol levels, and so forth. I have that kind of training, and I do that kind of work. 75% of our practice is criminal defense here at Bloom Legal, and a very large portion of that is DWI defense. We have the specialty training, we are a member of the DUI National Defense College, and we are helping people with DWIs in the state of Louisiana.

I hope I answered your questions, and if are there any more questions please call me at [504-599-9997], or send me an email at sjb@bloomlegal.com. We'd be glad to give consultations. Again, nothing I said here today should be misrepresented as actual legal representation, and each legal matter and case contain unique sets of facts and circumstances, so you should really get every individual case looked at by an attorney in your jurisdiction or in your area. Thanks a lot, and I look forward to hearing from you in the future, and keep sending us emails.

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