Evidence Review and Lawyer Referral for California DUI Cases

For a low one-time fee, we can meet online, review your case, determine a legal strategy, and refer you to a short list of excellent attorneys who have the experience, dedication, and legal acumen to achieve the best possible legal outcome.

Well, here you are, you have just gotten home from a night in jail, you’re exhausted and probably very anxious wondering how to begin getting your life back in order. Your mind is reeling from the possible implications of your arrest, the expense, and the effort possibly required and how this will affect your public record and employability. You may be angry that this is unfair, that you weren’t really drunk and you’re probably right about that, since a lot of DUI arrests are problematic. You’re starting to investigate what is a DUI charge and what does this mean to your life, family, friends, teachers or colleagues.

Some items are more pressing than others. Let’s go over them in proper sequence.

Step #1: Get Your Vehicle Out of Impound

Let’s start with your vehicle. First things first, if you weren’t told how to get your car out of impound, call the arresting agency or the tow yard , they can tell you where your car is, how much it will be to get it out (usually towing fees plus storage fees). You’ll want to fetch your car as soon as possible, since each day it sits in storage it costs more to get out.

Step #2: Request Your DMV Hearing

Next, you have 10 days from the date you were arrested to request a DMV hearing to defend your license. We generally recommend that you have a DUI attorney present during the hearing to represent your interests and protect your driving privileges.

Hiring a qualified DUI attorney who handles DMV hearings, while not required, can save you time, money, and headaches in the long run. This can be a significant investment. Treat it like a short-term partnership. This is where we come in. We call our service legal matchmaking.

Step #3: Get Your Temporary License

The pink paper is your temporary driver’s license; it also lists some your rights, including the right to the evidence in your case and a hearing to challenge the State and a possible suspension of your driving privilege. Once you make the request you are entitled to a “stay” on any action against your license until a hearing can be held and a decision rendered. You must make this request within 10 days of your arrest; you can have a lawyer make the request on your behalf or you can call the DMV yourself (the telephone number is printed on the top of your pink temporary license) and make the request. There are three things you need to request: 1) an Administrative Per Se hearing (APS hearing); 2) the evidence the State plans to use in its prosecution; 3) a stay of suspension.

Once the request is made and a “stay” put in place the DMV will send you a new temporary license and the “discovery” in your case. By making this request you have protected your privilege to drive and secured the time necessary to determine whether you will hire a lawyer to help you fight the case. When you have the “discovery” you can start looking for a lawyer, this is where we come in, we will review your case, make notes regarding the issues that need further investigation, (police body camera footage, video of the stop shot by the police cruiser and usually the documents supporting the chemical test(s) in your case). We will analyze your case for constitutional issues regarding the stop, investigation and subsequent arrest, explain possible defenses to the chemical tests and other potential weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. Finally, we will provide you with a short list of competent lawyers, usually three, who will offer a free consultation with you to discuss our report, the evidence you have and the evidence you need. If you have any questions that remain unanswered by any lawyer, we refer you to, simply send us a message and we will do our best to answer your question(s).

Step #4: Decide Whether to Hire a Lawyer

It is rarely advisable to “go it alone.” There are two general types of lawyers for DUI cases, private and public, a private lawyer is one you hire, he/she will generally work for you, they are available to take your calls, answer your questions and usually they have staff for answering general questions (like, what is the status of my license?). A public lawyer (sometimes called Public Defender, Legal Aid, Conflict Panel, Private Defender, etc.) is a lawyer paid by the State to handle cases for people who otherwise would not be able to afford private representation. These lawyers are skilled and competent and are extremely busy, meaning that they rarely have the time to deliver personalized service. These lawyers also do not defend your case at the DMV and often have little or no knowledge of the DMV process.

There are many lawyers who exclusively defend DUI cases, defend all types of criminal cases and still others who represent people in many different situations --- criminal, civil, or family. If you have the time, I encourage you to contact one or more lawyers to discuss your case; the decision you make is deeply personal, the person you hire will be working for you, intimately knowing the details of the night you were arrested and pushing against the State to get you the results you seek. It is important that you have confidence in the person and their skills. As I wrote above, many lawyers offer free consultations, at this consultation you should ask any questions you may have regarding the process, investigation, potential outcomes, likely outcomes and of course, cost. There is a wide range of rates and fees charged by attorneys, including flat fees (a single price for a specific segment of a case), hourly (an hourly rate, including time actually working on your case, in addition to transit, waiting in court time, DMV wait times, etc.) you should be clear what those fees are, how they are calculated and what you are receiving.

While many lawyers defend DUI cases, a DUI Defense attorney is a lawyer who has focused his/her practice on defending DUI cases. This area of expertise will usually include membership is DUI specific groups and highly specialized training in SFST (Standardized Field Sobriety Tests), DRE (Drug Recognition Expert training) and general knowledge (if not specific training) of the breath and/or blood devices used in your specific case. These lawyers have deep knowledge of the case law and vehicle code as it relates to DUI cases, often they fight for their clients through procedural means challenging both the admissibility of evidence, constitutional challenges to the stop, investigation and arrest of their clients. They also have significant experience (and, possibly specialized training) defending DUI cases at the DMV. Generally, these lawyers are more expensive than general criminal or general practice lawyers due to the high level of training and skill they possess and use to get results for their clients.

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You may have begun looking for an attorney by searching on Google, Yelp, Avvo, or some other online legal directory. You may also have talked to your friend’s uncle, who seems to make it a hobby to get a DUI arrest. You’ve read the four- or five-star reviews (who cares about the ones with lower review scores?), maybe reread a few of them, watched a few videos on Youtube, but still you have unanswered questions. Perhaps you’ve narrowed it down to four or five now.

A legal matchmaker is a living, breathing lawyer who determines a near flawless legal strategy. Bair Legal invented it. We don’t actually defend your case. Instead, our lead attorney, Hudson Bair, an experienced and highly regarded DUI attorney who determined that he needed to figure out how to simplify the process of hiring a first-class attorney.

Our procedure goes like this:

  1. Schedule an initial conversation/video conference at a mutually agreeable time;
  2. Review your police reports and other documents provided by the DMV after you request your hearing using secure and encrypted online file transfer;
  3. Provide a report delineating possible defenses and a list of additional documentation, such as legal motions, for your lawyer to request during his/her investigation of your case;
  4. Provide a written legal plan that contains a summary report and investigation checklist will be an essential tool for our circle of super-qualified attorneys;
  5. Provide initial contact and assist your evaluation of available lawyer candidates in good standing with the Bar Association to help you defend your case;
  6. A short list of lawyers in your area who defend DUI cases;
  7. Conversation/video conference regarding the report;
  8. Follow-up emails as necessary if you have further questions;