Friday, 30 September 2011

Choosing an Attorney for DWAI

DWAI, an acronym for the common legal charge known as Driving While Ability Impaired, is a civil violation in many jurisdictions pertaining to the operation of a motor vehicle while not mentally capable of driving safely. This is similar to DWI, in that it can lead to a conviction even if the accused is not found guilty of killing or injuring anyone, however the influence of drugs and alcohol is not a specific prerequisite for DWAI whereas it is in the case of DWI. Another major difference is that DWAI, while it is a charge that can be placed in tandem with DWI, it is not a criminal violation and as such does not result in jail time. Regardless, it is still very important that a defendant charged with DWAI would greatly benefit from the advice of a qualified DWAI attorney, because the penalties are significant. Unlike many common charges, DWAI does not have a plea bargain available, and conversely, compared to other similar cases the ruling frequently comes out in favor of the defendant if contested. Evidence related to DWAI cases is often hard to verify beyond a reasonable doubt, because the concept of impairment is loosely defined and difficult to prove. Police field sobriety tests are not usually considered conclusive or accurate.

A DWAI attorney is trained in the specifics of the laws that could potentially affect the case. With the assistance of experienced counsel and representation, an individual can easily convince a jury that there is not sufficient evidence of intoxication. A skilled DWAI attorney knows how to exploit the limits on prosecution in such cases; unlike DWI cases, in DWAI cases that involve alcohol it is necessary for them to prove specifically that the defendant was impaired, instead of simply having to prove that they had a particular blood alcohol level. It is increasingly important to choose representation that understands and has considerable experience using this and other relevant information, because by taking the right tact, it is possible to consistently have cases dismissed, but with the wrong approach a conviction is almost assured.

While a person’s chances are very good of succeeding in avoiding the consequences of a DWAI charge, it is imperative that they contact a lawyer as soon as possible. It can be considerably more difficult for a person to fight their charges after various deadline periods have passed. The sooner action is taken, the more options they will have for contesting their charges.

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