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criminal law

Criminal cases vary from traffic tickets to murder

Criminal cases vary from traffic tickets to murder.

TRAFFIC TICKETS

There are numerous attorneys who just do traffic tickets. However, some just intend on settling your ticket by changing the plea. Be sure you have representation that is actually going to try to get the ticket dismissed.

After receiving a traffic citation you can simply pay the amount written on the ticket. However, if it is a moving violation it will result in you receiving points on your license and your insurance may increase.

If you intend to deal with the citation yourself, be aware you will have to go to court on several occasions. This can cost you time and money.

A good result is a dismissal but you need to at least obtain a withhold of adjudication. This should ensure you do not receive points on your license.

POSSESSION/TRAFFICKING

There are various degrees of counts depending on the amount of drugs (weight) and what type of drugs and the situation.

If it is your first offense, drug court may be a possibility. This is a long process and includes classes, urine screens and attending court once a month. However, it usually, upon successful completion, results in a dismissal of the charges.

You are only offered this on your first charge and only one time. If you can complete it, you should take advantage of it.

To fight a drug charge you may have many defenses. Your attorney should get the discovery from the State and then try to build a defense using motions to suppress, based on mistakes that were made in the case, and any other motions/defenses.

You may also be offered a chance to do substantial assistance. Be careful, this is difficult and possibly dangerous.

A lot of cities now have the option of only writing a citation for a small amount of marijuana. This means you will not be arrested and can settle the case in court for a fine and possibly probation.

Be careful, most oils and E-cigarettes are now considered a derivative and considered a felony.

DUI

Driving under the influence is now more penalized than some “serious” crimes. There are set minimum mandatory fines, probation and requirements for your first, second or third offenses. These include probation, driving school, community service hours and immobilization of your vehicle. Your second or more offense will include longer probation and classes and a breathalyzer in your car.

You do not need an attorney to just simply accept the plea. A plea is set and cannot be changed. However, a good attorney can attempt to analyze the facts and either take the case to trial or attempt to reduce the charge to careless driving or reckless driving. There are defenses such as no probable cause for the original stop, improper paperwork, improper procedures followed, illegal searches, improper testing methods, etc.

If stopped, this firm recommends that you be polite to the officer, always have your paperwork (license, insurance, etc.) in order and ready and your vehicle in working order. If a road side test is requested you have the right to deny these and you have the right to deny a breath test. Be aware if you deny a breath test the DMV has the right to suspend your license separate and apart from the criminal case.

You have 10 days to request your DMV hearing or they will automatically suspend your license. Many people and attorneys forget to request your DMV formal review hearing.

If a blood test is requested the Supreme Court has ruled this is a search and in most cases a warrant is required.

Additional resources/Articles/Posts: Florida Drunk Driving

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