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Your First DUI Court Date in DC

by | May 23, 2011

One thing my clients always ask me is what is going to happen on their first day in the Washington, DC Traffic Court after being arrested on DUI charges, and whether there is anything they should do to prepare.

I would like to describe the process.  First, I recommend that you do three things as soon as possible following your arrest.  You should go to the DMV if you received a proposed notice of suspension of your driver’s license to request a hearing.

If you delay, you will miss your opportunity to challenge the proposed suspension.  Another thing you should do after being charged with a DUI in Washington, DC is call Alcoholics Anonymous/Narcotics Anonymous or other similar program and to discuss alcohol or drug treatment.  Regardless of whether you feel that you have a problem, the judge will appreciate you doing this.  Finally, the most important you can do is contact a Washington, DC DUI lawyer who can help protect your constitutional rights and fight the charges.

Once you arrive in court, you will check in at the time on your citation to appear, and wait for court to start.  When the judge takes the bench, you will probably be given some educational information about the dangers of drunk driving in Washington, DC, and be shown a short video.  Your case will be called and your DUI lawyer will speak on your behalf, and unless the case is eligible for a deferred sentencing agreement (DSA), you will be given a date to come back for a status hearing.  While this is the normal procedure, the facts of your case may be different and you should consult with your criminal defense attorney to discuss the matter.