For first time offenders/certain repeat offenders, there are a wide variety of programs available depending on the facts and circumstances of your case as well as your criminal history. If you are eligible for pretrial diversion, pretrial intervention or drug court and you successfully complete the program; your charges will be dropped.
Even if your charges get dropped, it does not mean there will be no evidence that you were arrested for the offense for which you were charged. Why is this important to you? For one thing, law enforcement routinely “run tags” and access your arrest record. For example, upon seeing that you have an arrest for theft, drug possession, and DUI, they may continue to follow your vehicle until they determine they are able to pull you or your vehicle over and detain you for purposes of an investigation.
Another example is your employer may run a background check on you and learn that you were previously arrested despite the fact the charges were dropped, which may result in termination of employment. Likewise, your insurance company has the same access to your criminal history and may raise your rates or even drop your policy depending on the crime for which you were arrested.
Even if you are a candidate for one of the three programs, you still need an Orlando DUI lawyer to advise you on the pros and cons of each of these programs as well as what to do after you have completed the program. You may be eligible for sealing and/or expunging evidence of your arrest upon the successful completion of these programs. It is important to not only remove any record of your arrest from a “rap sheet” or background check, but you must also remove any record that may be accessed by law enforcement and the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. You need a lawyer to guide you through this process to determine whether these programs should be accepted or whether to fight the case through litigation and trial.
For first time offenders/certain repeat offenders, you may be eligible for the State’s Pretrial DUI Diversion Program depending on the facts and circumstances of your case as well as your criminal history. If you are eligible for pretrial diversion and you successfully complete the program; your charges will be dropped.
During your consultation with a member of our firm, please ask us whether your case is a candidate for sealing or expunging your record after the case has been resolved. In many circumstances, we will gladly file the necessary paperwork and represent you during the hearing to have your record sealed or expunged WITHOUT ANY EXTRA FEE (just the cost for filing the motion with the clerk’s office).
Contact an Orlando DUI defense lawyer to learn more about how to best defend yourself against a first-time DUI charge.