What Does A DUI Lawyer Do?

What can a DUI lawyer do? These are great questions that I’m going to answer in this article. I’ll start by getting the obvious statement out of the way. Every criminal lawyer, whether they are representing their client for DUI, drunk driving, impaired driving, or refusing a breathalyzer, job is to get the very best outcome for their client. But digging deeper, what does a DUI lawyer do to get the best outcome for their client? What can an impaired driving lawyer do to get the best outcome for their client? Let’s get started.

Also Read: 5 Tips To Get The Best DUI Lawyer


First, it always starts with the evidence. DUI lawyers first need to understand what happened to get the best outcome for an impaired driving client. In other words, what’s the evidence that the government will be using to convict you? You do not need to prove that you are innocent in our legal system. In your DUI case, it’s the government’s job, represented by lawyers known as Crown lawyers, to prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. To convict you of your DUI charge, the Crown lawyers will rely on the evidence that the police have gathered. The Crown legally needs to disclose all the evidence they will be used to convict you. DUI lawyers always start their job by reviewing the evidence.

Collect All The Evidence

Second, DUI lawyers make sure to get all the evidence. The process of getting your evidence starts at your first court appearance. At this court appearance, you’ll get your evidence in a package called disclosure. Most clients don’t know that it’s common that you not to get all your evidence at your first court appearance. What you get is the evidence that the police have. You probably don’t get the evidence you’ll need to properly fight the impaired driving or DUI charge. So DUI lawyers will make sure they get all the evidence. For example, all the videos in the police car and in the jail cell, and we’ll also request a McNeil report. In many cases, the key to getting a good outcome will lie in the evidence that the Crown didn’t give you when you got your disclosure package.

Analyzing The Evidence

Third, DUI lawyers will analyze the evidence for opportunities. Once they get all the evidence, then they do a deep dive into the details as they relate to the applicable laws. At this stage, they’re looking for opportunities. For example, if there was a breathalyzer machine, which model was used? Was the unit properly calibrated? Who was the technician who operated the machine? Were they properly trained and qualified? Or, for example, they’ll look to see if there were any violations of your rights under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. DUI lawyers will do this by analyzing the timeline from your very first interaction with the police until the time the police released you from custody. They’ll compare that timeline and what happened to all the rules that the police have to follow.

Engage With The Crown

Fourth, DUI lawyers will engage in discussions with the Crown. One of the most important jobs that a DUI lawyer has is to engage in discussions with the Crown. And assuming your lawyer has done a good job analyzing the evidence, they will be able to enter that discussion with clarity about getting the best outcome. Another key factor is knowing the court and having relationships with the Crown lawyers. DUI lawyers who are experienced often have good work in relationships and those relationships are combined with a detailed understanding of the evidence of the law, it usually leads to the best outcome and the way forward in your case. If you’ve been charged with drunk driving, DUI, impaired driving or refusing a breathalyzer test, your legal strategy can make the difference between winning and losing.

How Much Does A DUI Lawyer Cost In Ontario?

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Here are five things that you need to know about how much a DUI lawyer costs in Ontario. First, there is really no set price. There’s a huge range of costs in the market. Now, lawyer costs really depend on the lawyer that you work with, the lawyer’s perception of the complexity of your case and how they price a case. And those fees can range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars.

How Complex Your Case Is Matters

Generally, the more complex a case is, the more the cost will be. So, for example, if there was an accident where people were hurt with multiple witnesses and you’re going to challenge the evidence, that’s going to be a lot more expensive than a straightforward DUI.

Read More: How To Fight A DUI Without A Lawyer

Hourly Versus Flat Fees

It’s common for DUI lawyers to offer a flat rate for a DUI defence, which means that your lawyer will cap and fix the amount that you will have to pay for your defence. Now, the advantage of a flat fee is a certainty. You’re going to know how much your defence is going to cost you so you can manage your finances appropriately. However, there are many lawyers who do not charge fees but will charge you by the hour. And if that happens, you just want to get an idea of how many hours your lawyer estimates your defence will take so you can manage your finances.

Will Your Lawyer Accept Payment Plans Now?

Hopefully, you’ll find a lawyer that you’re comfortable with. However, you still may be concerned about the total fee that he or she may be charging you. And if that’s the case, ask your lawyer if they will accept the payment plan to help with your cash flow. Many DUI lawyers do accept payment plans and just ask and find out.

Apply For Legal Aid

Now, if you’re really, really tight with finances, check into whether you can qualify for legal aid. And if you do, you can get a legal aid certificate that you can use as payment for a DUI lawyer. The downside of legal aid is that not all lawyers accept legal aid.

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