What to Do After a DUI: 7 Necessary Steps to Take
A police officer pulled you over, gave you a breath test, and before you even realized what was happening, hauled you off to jail.
Don’t panic. You won’t be stuck in there forever. Remembering a few simple tips will ensure you get back out of jail again and prepare you for your day in court.
We’ve put together this guide to walk you through what to do after a DUI, so make sure you keep reading below!
- Don’t Forget Your Court Date!
If a police officer pulls you over and determines you are driving under the influence, they will (most likely) arrest you and take you to the county jail. At some point while you’re there, you will receive a notice that includes your court date.
Do not lose this date!
Failing to show up to court could result in a large fine or even a warrant for your arrest. If you want to stay out of jail and get your license back as soon as possible, making your court dates should be your top priority.
Keep in mind, you will likely have more than one court date. Make sure you show up to all these court dates on time every time.
- Contact a Bail Bondsman
Depending on where you live, you may not be able to get out of jail after your DUI arrest until one of two things happen: your first court date rolls around or you post bail. Waiting for your court date could take weeks or even months, so for most people, posting bail is a better option. This will allow you to continue work, school, or looking after your kids while you wait for your court date.
But you might not be able to afford bail on your own. A bail bondsman helps you cover the initial cost of bail so you can get out of jail and back to your normal life. If you can’t do this from jail, you can ask a friend or family member to do it on your behalf.
- Request a DMV Hearing
After you get out of jail, one of the first things you should do is request a DMV hearing. During this hearing, the DMV will determine whether or not they’ll allow you to keep your license.
If you don’t request one of these hearings, your license will be automatically suspended. However, keep in mind, just because you request a hearing doesn’t mean you will get to keep your license.
- Figure out Your Transportation
If you don’t pass your DMV hearing, you won’t have a driver’s license anymore. If you plan to continue going to work or school, you will need to find other transportation options. This might include a bus, a bike, rideshare, carpooling with a friend, etc.
At the very least, though, you’ll need someone to pick you up from the jail and give you a ride home.
Don’t try to keep driving without your license. This could result in a serious fine and even jail time (up to six months). It will also hurt your case. No judge will look favorably on you if you continued to break the law after your DUI.
Above all else, make sure you at least have transportation to your court dates.
- Hire a DUI Attorney
Getting a DUI doesn’t just mean you can’t drive. It can impact a lot of other areas of your life, including your work, your school, and even your home life. An attorney will walk you through your case and make sure you get the most favorable results.
You should never try to represent yourself during a DUI case. You simply don’t know the law as well as an attorney, and it’s easy to miss something or make easy mistakes that can hurt you during the trial.
If you want to hire the best DUI attorney, make sure you spend some time researching options in your area. Prentiss Law Office is a good place to start.
- Prepare for Your Court Date
Do you want to plead guilty during your trial? If not, you’ll need to form a strong defense to prove your innocence. This will take some time, and it might take some legwork from you.
Your attorney will help you put together the best representation for you, and they will likely take care of most of the hard work for you. However, it’s a good idea to be involved in this process.
Communicate with your attorney often so you stay in the loop and understand everything that is happening during your case.
- Learn About SR-22 Insurance
Your car insurance premiums will get much higher after your DUI. Because of this, it’s a good idea to look into SR-22 insurance as soon as possible. Even if you don’t have your license back yet, learning about this insurance will ensure you are prepared when you do.
What to Do After a DUI
If you’re having a hard time remembering what to do after a DUI, the most important thing to remember is to hire an attorney. After that, your attorney will be able to walk you through the rest of the process, take care of the difficult steps for you, and make sure you get the best representation in court.
Want to learn a few more helpful tips for other tricky legal situations? You’re in the right place! Don’t hesitate to take a look at the rest of our blog today!
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