Mistake 1 - The Attorney Advises You that the Case Can Not be Won
In addition to my other practice areas, I’ve been practicing as a Kentucky DUI Defense lawyer since 1999. I typically spend no less than 45 minutes with potential clients collecting information about the traffic stop and the arrest at the beginning of every DUI representation. Let me repeat that: I spend no less than 45 minutes with the potential client collecting facts! Yet I have received calls for second opinions or after their attorney had lost their case from individuals charged with DUI for second opinions where their attorney had recommended a guilty plea. On review of some of those cases where I picked up the representation I went ahead and obtained favorable outcomes for my clients. In my opinion, I have come to believe that after obtaining the police report and looking at the breath test results many lawyers simply advise their client to plead guilty without considering all of the facts which may prove a client's innocence. Some of those facts include errors made by the officer during the roadside standard field sobriety tests, known as SFST's. Other significant facts include the officer's failure to follow state laws and procedures during the collection of the blood, breath, and urine. Sometimes those facts support a finding that the officer was not being accurate in his reporting of the facts.
Mistake 4— The Lawyer Did Not Explain The Administrative Penalties Associated With a Conviction or a Guilty Plea
Additionally, a few Kentucky counties have special programs where the parties (prosecutor and defense attorney) may petition the court to set aside certain misdemeanor guilty pleas if the convicted person meets certain requirements, including the fulfillment of their sentence and payment of all fines. These programs typically apply when a person's career is at risk. Please contact your criminal defense attorney to learn about the availability of these programs.