Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious offense that can have long lasting consequences. Knowing what to do after being arrested for suspected DWI is absolutely essential. The actions that you take in the days and weeks after your arrest can make a big difference. Continue reading to learn more about what to do after a DWI arrest:
Release from Custody
Depending on the circumstances of your arrest, you may be booked into jail. You will need to see a judge, who will set bail. You will then be able to have a friend or family member post bail so you can be released from custody. In some circumstances, you may not be taken to jail; you will be ticketed and released. When you sign the ticket you are promising to appear in court.
Contact an Attorney
While you are not required to have an attorney represent you in a DWI case, your outcome will most likely be better if you do have one. Ideally, you should contact an experienced DWI attorney as soon as possible after your arrest. Hiring a DWI attorney right away will ensure that you can provide details of the arrest and will also give your attorney more time to build a defense before you are due in court.
In most states, a drivers license is suspended at the time of a DWI arrest pending a verdict from the court system. The last thing you want to do is drive on a suspended license while your case is going through the court system. If you are unsure about the status of your license after a DWI arrest, talk to your attorney or contact the motor vehicle department. It may be possible to get a restricted license that will allow you to only drive to work and school while your DWI case is pending.
Show Up for All Court Appearances
One of the most important things to do after a DWI arrest is to be at court for all ordered appearances. If you fail to show up in court, your bail may be forfeited and a warrant for your arrest will most likely be issues. Even if you have retained a DWI attorney to represent you, you still need to be present in the court room. It is in your best interest to give yourself extra time to drive to the court house, go through security, and find the appropriate court room to ensure that you're not late.