Since lawyers have years of education and training, they command higher fees than many professions. This is especially true when it comes to attorneys who specialize in DUI cases, since these cases can sometimes be extremely complex and involve many facets of law. However, since most attorneys do not post their fees online or in their advertising, potential clients usually have no idea how much representation from these lawyers will cost. If you are in need of a Washington, DC DUI lawyer and require information regarding fees and costs, here are some general guidelines.
Training and Experience
Since DUI cases can be complex due to changing regulations and laws, most attorneys who specialize in this area participate in additional training once they complete law school, and in many cases even after they have been practicing attorneys for several years. In general, attorneys receive 25-40 hours of instruction from the National Highway Safety Administration, as well as additional training from other organizations.
Office Costs and Additional Overhead
Along with the specialized training in DUI law, most attorneys also have office costs and additional overhead that must be factored into their costs for the client. This can include paying salaries of secretaries, legal assistants, and investigators, as well as rent for office space and other expenses.
Your First Offense
If this is your first offense for DUI, most attorneys in DC will charge clients a minimum of $2000-$3000. While this may sound high to some, this money buys you a lawyer who will investigate the case thoroughly, consult with experts, and prepare a case for trial. If you try to go cheap and spend $1000 or less for legal representation in these cases, chances are you’re only going to get a lawyer who will have you plead guilty, just to get the case over with as soon as possible.
Second, Third, and Additional Defenses
If you find yourself facing a second or third DUI arrest, be prepared to see your legal bills increase substantially. In these cases, you’ll be spending anywhere from $4000-$6000 or even more, depending upon the circumstances surrounding your case.
In complex DUI cases, your lawyer may consult with expert witnesses and even have them testify at trial if necessary. The typical cost for these experts varies from $300-$500, and all of these costs are passed on to the client. However, be wary if you are using a lawyer who is guaranteeing results because they are using expert witnesses since in any legal case no reputable lawyer will guarantee a win.
Even though you may have to pay thousands of dollars to get a quality DUI lawyer in Washington, DC, it’s usually money well-spent. By working with a lawyer who has years of experience and knowledge handling these cases, you’ll have a much better chance of coming out on top. Whether they need to bring in expert witnesses or spend hours pouring over police reports, doing so can lead to a much better outcome.