After being released from custody for an operating while intoxicated (OWI) charge can be one of the most stressful times in a person’s life. You hear that OWI’s are expensive and that you can serve some jail time, even if it is just your first offense, so it is very important you get your ducks in a row from the very beginning. To do this, it is a good idea to at least speak with an OWI/DUI attorney as soon as possible. Generally, most attorneys will initially speak with you for free to get you going on the right track as there are deadlines for certain items to be submitted for an OWI charge.
One of those items is the DOT appeal form. A person only has ten (10) days from the date of their OWI charge to submit a request for an appeal with the DOT. If they don’t submit it within the ten (10) appeal period, the person’s license is immediately revoked. An attorney can help you get the request properly submitted to DOT within the time allowed. The advantage to appealing with the DOT is that even if you end up losing your appeal, measures can be requested by the attorney to the ALJ so that your license is not revoked until you get your temporary restricted license (TRL). The advantage of getting your TRL is that you can still drive wherever and whenever you want as long as you have an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in your vehicle and SR22 insurance along with a few other things. This is crucial for a person who has a job or needs to drop their children off at school or daycare.
Additionally, the defense attorney will be able to advise you on the ins and outs of the process. If you are a first-time OWI/DUI offender, the attorney will inform you of when (and when not) you need to be at court. Believe it or not, there are ways to get around physically attending court dates for certain types of hearings/conferences.
In addition to the above, the defense attorney will advise you (after reviewing the discovery/evidence) whether there is a legal technicality in your case so that you may be able to get your charges dismissed or whether you have a good chance at trial of getting a not guilty verdict.
Lastly, there is a myriad of other conditions that will need to be met by the OWI defendant before the case is completed. Simply put, it is a good idea to have an attorney on your side to advise what you should do should a problem occur AND they make the whole process just a little less stressful for the OWI defendant. If you have any questions regarding your Iowa OWI/DUI, do not hesitate to contact me and I would be happy to answer any of your questions.