How do you select the best DWI attorney for your case? In this video, Criminal Defense Attorney Benson Varghese explains why you should ask these five question.
There’s an old saying that hiring a cheap criminal defense lawyer is one of the most costly mistakes you can make. I’ll add to that and say, hiring the wrong criminal defense attorney has the same effect. In this video, we’ll talk about five questions you should ask any attorney you’re considering hiring so that you don’t make a costly mistake. First, ask the attorney how often they appear in the court where your case is pending. For example, in Tarrant County, we have 10 misdemeanor courts, and most first-time DWIs fall into misdemeanor courts. The only way it would be a felony is if there were a child passenger, someone under the age of 15 in the vehicle. So talking about those 10 misdemeanor courts in Tarrant County, you have to know that each of those 10 judges have different expectations, have different things that you need to consider as you prepare your case.
Additionally, there will be at least 20 misdemeanor prosecutors to whom your case could fall. Each prosecutor’s going to evaluate cases differently and your attorney will need to know who the prosecutor is and how to best lay-out the facts of your case to get you the result that you want or best prepare your case for trial. Second, ask the attorney how many times they’ve gone to a jury trial with a case like yours. At our firm, all of the partners have been to trial, jury trial, over a 100 times. By going to trial by jury, you understand and develop skills far greater than a person who is not in trial regularly. You’ve crossed examined witnesses. You found issues with lay witnesses, like 911 callers and professional witnesses, like the people who are working at labs or police officers. You’re understanding and poking holes in issues with evidence, how it was collected, how it was tested, and what happened between the collection, the testing, and when we finally get to court.
There’s so much more an attorney brings to the table with trial experience than a person who rarely, if ever goes to trial. The prosecutors know that too. Many reductions and dismissals of DWI charges come from the fact that the prosecutor’s been convinced. The attorney on the other side is so well-prepared and so good at taking advantage of this state’s weaknesses in a case, that if they state went to trial on this set of facts, it probably would not turn out the way the prosecutor wanted. The third question you should ask a defense attorney you’re considering hiring is whether or not they will be the person handling your case. At our firm, we take great pride in handling the cases that we bring in. So if you’ve talked to me, you’re going to have me handle your case because we’ve built up a rapport. I’m not going to hand your case off to someone else to evaluate and walk you through the court process.
The fourth question you should ask an attorney you’re considering hiring is what other practice areas do they have. For example, there are attorneys who handle both family cases and criminal cases, or criminal cases and personal injury cases. And you’ll have to make a decision. I would suggest to you that a person who handles exclusively criminal defense matters and is in the criminal courthouse every day is going to be better suited to represent you, to know the parties in the criminal courthouse, and to put your best foot forward when it comes time for trial.
A fifth question you should always ask an attorney before you hire them is what their billing practices are. An attorney may charge a flat rate for a particular legal problem, or they might bill on an hourly model, against a retainer that’s refilled every month called an evergreen retainer or a retainer that’s just depleted over time. For driving while intoxicated cases, we know the amount of work that’s going to go in, particularly pre-trial. So from the moment you hire us till the resolution of the case, we know it’s going to take a certain amount of work. And as a result, we can quote you a flat rate. You’ll know on day one, how much that DWI is going to cost you in terms of legal fees.
Hiring the best DWI attorney is certainly one of the most important decisions you will make when charged with a driving law intoxicated case. It could mean the difference between a conviction and a dismissal, and it could mean the difference between a conviction and an acquittal at trial. If you have questions about how DWI cases are prosecuted in Texas, or have a current charge, give us a call at (817) 203-2220, or check our website, versustexas.com, for more information. If you found this video to be helpful, be sure to like and subscribe to get future updates from us.
We hope you found this information about finding the best DWI attorney useful. For more information about DWI charges in Texas, please visit our DWI page.
Have more questions about a DWI charge in Texas? Call us today at (817) 203-2220 or reach out online for a complimentary strategy session with one of the best DWI attorney in Fort Worth.