DWI Attorney: Worth Hiring?
Is it worth hiring an attorney for a DWI? Anyone who watches crime dramas on TV knows that they have the right to represent themselves in court. When you face charges of driving while intoxicated (DWI) or any criminal offense, you have the option to act as your own legal representation.
However, just because you have that right doesn’t mean it’s a good idea.
A DWI in Texas carries some of the most severe consequences across the United States. From your money to your freedom, drunk driving comes with heavy consequences. Moreover, the impact echoes far into your future.
Long after you complete your sentence, a DWI makes it difficult to find employment or even a place to live. When the stakes are this high, hiring a DWI defense attorney is your best bet for beating the charge. To discuss your case with the top DWI lawyer in Houston, schedule a free consultation with the Martinez Law Firm.
Is It Worth Hiring a Lawyer for a DWI in Texas?
“A man who represents himself has a fool for a client” is a quote we often attribute to Abraham Lincoln. While it sounds harsh, there’s truth at the core. The criminal justice system in the United States is complex. Additionally, the laws are as difficult to navigate as the processes.
Combined, this means that there are serious risks when you take on the system without formal training. It’s simply not wise to handle your own legal defense. After all, would you attempt your own root canal?
If cost is your core concern, think of it this way. You might save on money in the short term. However, that amount is a pittance compared to botching your own oral surgery. Similarly, when you consider hiring an attorney, having an expert on your side is in your best interest.
There’s no guarantee when it comes to driving while intoxicated in Texas. However, there is a defense. With the right attorney on your side, it could be the difference between carrying a conviction for the rest of your life and a dismissal.
The Downsides of Fighting Without a DWI Defense Attorney
Building a successful DWI defense takes a lot of care and expertise. There are numerous facts to consider from your arrest that may seem insignificant at first. However, to a trained eye, it could lead to an acquittal.
When you go into court as your own legal representation, it doesn’t earn you any special treatment. The judge holds you to the same standards they hold a licensed lawyer to. Additionally, they expect you to know how a trial functions.
One of the biggest hurdles for self-representation is the attempt to examine witnesses and introduce evidence. Across the criminal justice system, there are rules in place that establish how to question a witness.
Without experience, it often seems counterintuitive. The same is true of physical evidence. Oftentimes, you have to know about a specific rule tied to a piece of evidence in order to admit it. When you don’t have this knowledge, key evidence gets thrown out.
Additionally, there are scientific issues at play in some DWI cases. As an experienced DWI attorney, Herman Martinez knows when these issues work to your advantage. Oftentimes, a DWI case boils down to how alcohol affected you. With a thorough understanding of the science, there’s the potential to show a jury you simply weren’t intoxicated.
The Consequences of Self-Representation
If the conviction holds, you receive no leniency for your attempt to act as your own attorney. This puts you at great risk, especially in a state like Texas. Even for a first-offense DWI, you face fines up to thousands of dollars as well as jail time. Additionally, you lose your license for an extended period of time.
What people don’t consider is that the consequences of a DWI extend long after the sentence ends. Oftentimes, prospective employers and landlords look to background checks to make their decisions. When they see a DWI conviction on your record, it costs you housing and employment opportunities.
As a Houston criminal lawyer, Herman Martinez keeps this at the forefront of his mind whenever he represents Houstonians. This is because a DWI conviction affects more than potential situations. It also has the potential to lead to the loss of your current job.
Moreover, you lose your ability to maintain a pilot’s license, nursing license, or medical license. When you choose to represent yourself in court, you put a lot on the line.
How Much Does a DWI Attorney Cost?
When you need to hire a Houston criminal lawyer, the cost varies with the circumstances of your case. This is because some cases require more resources or time. However, it is typical for the cost to run in the thousands of dollars.
Typically, DWI defense attorneys charge fees in one of two ways: flat fees or hourly rates. With an hourly rate, your attorney tracks the amount of time they spend on your case. In the end, they send you a bill based on their time spent.
Some attorneys handle cases for a flat fee regardless of what it costs. Additionally, other attorneys offer tiered pricing where your fee ranges depending on the extent of your case. However, attorneys often offer free case evaluation sessions. These provide you with the opportunity to evaluate them and get an idea of what to expect.
A Good Defense Attorney Is Worth Every Cent
When it comes down to money and legal bills, you have to compare the costs relevant to how a conviction impacts your future. The money you spend on an experienced, expert Houston criminal defense lawyer is an investment in your future. When you hire an attorney, they are your advocate.
Truly, the best advice for handling a DWI case in court is to hire a certified DWI defense attorney with experience and a good record.
If you face a DWI conviction in Houston, the Martinez Law Firm is here to help you. Herman Martinez is an experienced Houston criminal lawyer with a solid track record. Moreover, he always keeps the best interest of his clients in mind as he pursues the best possible outcome for their case.
With decades of experience in the criminal justice system and experience as a former prosecutor, he understands how both sides analyze a DWI case. To discuss your future, schedule a free consultation with our team today.