Archive for April, 2013
Choosing the right Tennessee DUI lawyer is a critical decision that must be taken seriously. A Driving Under the Influence charge is often the first interaction many people have with the criminal justice system, which naturally leads to stress and uncertainty about the criminal process and possible repercussions. Many people often receive a flood of mail following a DUI arrest from attorneys, but it makes sense to carefully consider all options.
If you hire a lawyer and become dissatisfied with your choice, while your case is pending or even after a DUI conviction, it may be difficult to retain a different DUI attorney. For instance, because it is so important to begin investigating a DUI quickly, our office is often reluctant to to take a case after another lawyer has been retained and precious time to investigate has been lost. Therefore, the first decision should be made after considering the following:
- What is the focus of the attorney’s practice? Are they, and for how long have they been primarily devoted to DUI defense?
- Has the lawyer had any complaints filed against him or her?
- What books and articles has the attorney published?
- Did the DUI attorney graduate from an ABA accredited law school?
- Has the Tennessee Commission on CLE & Specialization and the National College for DUI Defense certified the attorney as a DUI Defense Specialist?
- What reviews has the attorney received from lawyer review agencies like Avvo?
- Has the lawyer achieved Martindale-Hubbell’s™ prestigious “AV” (very high to preeminent) rating?
- When and how often has the attorney lectured to his or her peers about DUI Defense?
We encourage prospective clients to devote the appropriate time, usually 2 hours, to properly investigate and speak with an attorney about their case. In our office, Steve and Sara are available every day of the year to discuss pending DUI charges. Please contact us at 865-249-7200 with any questions.
The internet and electronic record keeping has led to the end of a time when what “happened in Vegas, stayed in Vegas.” Similarly, criminal convictions from a distant state may no longer be ignored after a person moves away from that state. As law enforcement, court clerk’s offices, and agencies responsible for drivers licenses continue to store and share information electronically, a person’s criminal history is increasingly likely to follow him or her across state lines.
For example, a prior DUI conviction from another state may significantly increase potential penalties and the outcome of a Tennessee DUI case, just as would a prior Tennessee DUI conviction. State and federal agencies are increasingly accurate and reliable in their effort to report crimes to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC). By accessing the NCIC, any state or federal prosecutor may quickly review an individual’s entire criminal history, including charges that have been dismissed.
Prior charges and convictions may negatively impact pending DUI litigation. As a result, it is imperative that anyone facing criminal charges fully disclose these charges to their Tennessee Defense Attorney, even if the prior charges have been dismissed and expunged.
Please contact our office to find out more about convictions in other states and how to address them as part of a DUI defense strategy. You may contact our Tennessee DUI defense lawyers, Steve and Sara by calling (865) 249-7200.