After you’re stopped and arrested on suspicion of DUI, you’ll await sentencing at a Florida DUI trial. You need to know your rights and how to protect them during this time, or you risk facing unfair charges and penalties. A Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney can help you protect your rights both before and during your trial.
Prior to Your DUI Trial: The Traffic Stop and Arrest
When you’re charged with DUI in Floridayour case typically begins with a traffic stop for some sort of driving infraction. Some of the reasons drivers are commonly stopped include:
- driving with expired tags;
- disobeying traffic signals;
- reckless driving (weaving between lanes, abrupt stops, etc.);
- driving too slowly; and
- equipment malfunctions (broken tail light, burnt-out headlight, etc.).
Once the officer pulls your vehicle over, he or she will look for any signs of intoxication. You may be asked to take a breathalyzer test or perform a field sobriety test. If the officer reasonably suspects that you’re under the influence of alcohol beyond the legal limit, you may be arrested on suspected DUI charges and take you to the station for further testing.
During this entire arrest process you have the right to refuse to answer any questions or provide any information beyond your license, registration and insurance information. Until you speak with a Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney you should refrain from saying too much.
Booking, Release and Awaiting Your Florida DUI Trial
After being brought to the police station you’ll go through the routine process of identification, fingerprinting, photographing and questioning. You have the right to have your attorney present during questioning, and if you want to give your case the best chance at Florida DUI trial, you should exercise this right.
After all that’s said and done, you’ll be placed in a holding cell for a minimum of 8 hours and not released thereafter until you’re found to be no longer intoxicated. If a bond amount was set at the time of booking, then you must pay this bond; otherwise, you’re allowed to leave once you test with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .05%.
Your license will have been automatically suspended at this point, but your DUI citation will serve as a temporary license. Now is the time that you must file your petition for a hearing with the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to challenge your license suspension. Your Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney will remind you that you only have 10 days from your arrest to do this.
Now a court date will be scheduled for your Florida DUI trial, during which you can argue your defense and await sentencing. Now is the time to examine the details of your case closely with your attorney.
The Florida DUI Trial: Settling your Case
A Florida DUI trial is conducted much like any other criminal case. Both sides will present evidence and testimony explaining why you were or weren’t guilty of DUI in Florida. Your Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney should be present at all of these proceedings to make sure that you’re being given a fair trial.
Should the evidence from the prosecution prove to be false, misleading or not substantial enough, you may be able to negotiate a lower penalty or even have the charges dropped. This is why it’s important to have an attorney help you with your case – if you merely give in, you may not have a fair trial.
At the end of your trial, the judge will announce the final decision on your charges and penalties. Having an experienced Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney on your side can help make sure these charges are fair and accurate. You have the right to an attorney – make sure you exercise that right!
Contacting a Fort Lauderdale DUI Defense Attorney
You have the right to an attorney during the proceedings before, during and after your Florida DUI trial. If you are facing DUI charges in Fort Lauderdale, your legal team is your best defense. Contact the Fort Lauderdale DUI defense attorney team at Falk & Ross to discuss your case – 1-877-663-5110.