What to do when you’ve been charged

Drivers who are aware of laws concerning driving under influence or driving while intoxicated (DUI/DWI) know that it’s going to be big trouble for them if they are found out to be operating vehicles. However, if a driver is actually charged, there are certain steps to be taken to ensure that everything is still in order.

Firstly, it is advised that drivers who want to learn more about their rights and how charges work should consult a lawyer in their state. This is the best way for them to learn the specifics on some of their state’s driving laws, and if there are special terms and conditions drivers have to be aware of.

If said driver has been arrested, the police officer will take him or her into custody. However, drivers should make sure they are read their Miranda warnings first before any questions are asked. If not, then this is a good defense for them.

Drivers are also advised to make sure they know if they are charged under reasonable suspicion or probable cause, because they are two different things.

For instance, reasonable suspicion allows the officer to temporarily stop and detain drivers, to check if they have done anything wrong.

However, officers must have probable cause to make an arrest. This means, the officer should have enough evidence that the motorist has actually done procedures to confirm that said driver is under the influence.

Either way, drivers will be taken to a station in order for their charges to be processed. They will also be informed if they are able to make bail. In general, the officers will ask the driver to “book” their personal information.

After the booking, there is a possibility that charged drivers will have an early release until he or she has to go to court. If there is a bail amount, then drivers have to pay this first before they are allowed release. If the bail cannot be paid, drivers have the option to go to a bail bond agency. These generally ask drivers to pay a small percentage in order to be loaned an amount.

Of course, sometimes, the court concludes that a driver can be released “on your own recognizance,” meaning no bail is needed. This is a possibility if said driver has a clean criminal record, have strong ties to the community, or has not caused serious damage.

Drivers are sometimes asked to go to court for their arraignment. This is generally the first and only time drivers need to appear in court. Drivers who plead guilty are given punishment, while pleading not guilty will start a trial. This is the time when DUI lawyers become really handy.

Curious drivers are advised to read specific laws in their states about charging DUI and DWI cases. If they want to learn more about these situations, they are also advised to seek a DUI attorney for more information.