4 reasons to hire an attorney after a Minnesota DWI arrest

According to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, an average of 70 people were arrested for DWI each day across the state in 2014. Sometimes, those who find themselves in this situation choose to handle the issue on their own instead of hiring an attorney. Even if they have never been arrested for an alcohol-related offense before, however, it is very helpful for drivers who have been charged with DWI to obtain legal representation.

Understanding of the laws

There are a number of intricacies involved with the drunk driving laws in Minnesota. For example, people may face tougher penalties depending on their prior arrest record and their blood alcohol concentration level at the time of their arrest. DWI attorneys are familiar with these laws and stay up to date on any changes. Thus, they may be able to explain people’s options and the impact of these laws on their clients’ concerns.

Questioning the stop

Most people are aware that the legal BAC limit in Minnesota is .08 percent. That said, many are of the belief that they cannot be arrested for DWI if their BAC level is under that limit. However, that is not necessarily true. The Minnesota DPS points out that people can be arrested if they are below the limit. This is the case if the authorities can show that alcohol consumption or drug use caused them to make driving errors.

Unlike the average person, DWI lawyers know what to question when it comes to drunk driving traffic stops. Furthermore, they are aware of the rights that drivers have during such stops. By calling a stop into question, they may be able to show that a driver’s rights were violated, and thus, his or her arrest was invalid.

Countering the evidence

Before arresting drivers for DWI, law enforcement officers often ask them to perform field sobriety tests and to submit to breath tests. The authorities then use the results of these tests as evidence to support the motorists’ arrests. Legal representatives who focus their practice on drunk driving defense are familiar with the factors that may affect the outcomes of these tests. Therefore, they are able to question these test results, which otherwise may seem incriminating and insurmountable.

Additionally, there are certain requirements for field sobriety and breath tests. For example, Minnesota state law specifies that a person’s BAC level must be checked within two hours of when they allegedly were operating a motor vehicle while under the influence. If the test was performed later, an attorney may may succeed in having the results of the test declared inadmissible.

Dealing with the potential consequences

People face a wide range of penalties and consequences if they are convicted of DWI in Minnesota. These include fines, jail time, driver’s license revocations and mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device, among others. These may have a significant effect on people’s personal and professional lives. Effective DWI lawyers understand how to defend these cases in court, as well as the options that may be available to drivers. Thus, they may help them determine the best course of action given the circumstances of their cases.

Protecting the future

On their own, people who are arrested for DWI in Minnesota may not understand the laws or procedures that are involved with their cases. Therefore, they should contact an effective DWI defense attorney. A qualified attorney will explain their options and help them to establish a criminal defense that stands up to the opposition.