Am I Allowed to Represent Myself in My New York DWI Case? Why Should I Hire an Attorney?

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If you are currently facing charges for driving while intoxicated, or DWI, in the State of New York you are likely facing some serious judicial and non-judicial consequences should you be convicted. If you have never been charged with DWI before you likely have a number of questions and concerns relating to the charges and the criminal process itself. For example, you may be thinking "Am I allowed to represent myself in my New York DWI Case?  Why Should I Hire an Attorney?"

You may be tempted to forego hiring an attorney to represent you for your DWI case in an attempt to save money. There is no legal requirement that you retain the services of an attorney to represent you when charged with a criminal offense in the State of New York; however, there are several important reasons why most people choose to do so, including:

  • Knowledge of the law – you may be perfectly capable of understanding the DWI statute; however, do you know what an illegal search and seizure is? Do you know what the most common DWI defenses are? Only an attorney can cover all the basis and ensure that every available defense is explored in an attempt to avoid a conviction.
  • Understanding procedure –even though you are not an attorney you will be expected to know all the rules of procedures and court rules if you elect to proceed pro se, or without representation.
  • Access to resources – only an attorney has the resources that are often needed to do things such as challenge breath test results.
  • Ability to negotiate you may be planning to simply plead guilty to the charge which is why you are considering proceeding pro se. Often, however, an attorney is able to negotiate a much more favorable plea agreement than you could negotiate on your own.
  • Trial skills – if your case ends up going to trial you will need an attorney who is prepared to defend you and who knows the case inside and out.
  • Convenience – you may think you are saving money by not hiring an attorney; however, once you sit down and figure out the lost time and lost income involved in representing yourself you may find the convenience of retaining an attorney actually saves you money in the long run.

If you have been charged with driving while intoxicated in the State of New York it is important that you consult with an experienced New York criminal defense attorney right away to evaluate your case and get started on your defense. Contact the Law Offices of Adam Thompson today by calling (212)267-2424 to schedule your appointment.