PI/DUI cases have a lot in common with respect to what clients should or should not do. In both instances Silence is Golden. As a rule the less you share the better off you are. Don’t admit fault in an accident or admit guilt with a DUI. It is not always what you say but what the other side THOUGHT YOU SAID.
Clients should take down social media. Investigators for the DA or Insurance Company can save a lot of money just checking Facebook sites. Some accident victims post that they are going skiing or entering a marathon right after an accident. This is after they complained to the doctor how much they hurt and all the things they cannot do, arguably if they can play a sport then they were not that injured in the accident.
A client shouldn’t post that they were lucky not to have been stopped the day before when they were even more drunk or any other post about their drinking etc. It is a good idea to also hire a local attorney who will know the judges and court employees and that should be done ASAP. Once one has a lawyer they can no longer be contacted by an investigator on either type of case.
Preserving evidence by writing things down right away helps your case. Smart cell phones can be used to take picture of parties, cars, streets and to obtain statements from drivers and wits.
The law arguably wins every time no matter what kind of case one discusses. Whether you are found guilty or not guilty of a DUI you still lose. All defendants lose time and money from: the arrest; court trips; Bail; Retaining counsel; Loss of earnings and dealing with the stress.
When an accident victim files suit, they can be served written questions called interrogatories or have their depo taken. Then one might be ordered to appear in court for a variety of appearances and though a case is called for 8 am it may not be heard until the afternoon calendar or it may be trailed until the next day or week.
Thus there is no way you can truly win when you are in civil or criminal litigation. Stress is taken it out on their significant other. This leads to subsequent domestic violence arrests as well as divorces and disharmony with the family……not to mention the interruption of business and the financial losses incurred therein.
A party wins or loses a case for many reasons other than the facts. Sometimes, they cannot afford the best lawyer or the experts necessary to prevail. Often a defendant is unlikeable either because of his/her appearance … such as tattoos.
When going to court I advise my clients:
- When around the courthouse, become the most courteous driver on the road. You don’t know if the driver you cut off or flipped off will be your judge, clerk or juror. You may not recognize that driver but they will remember you.
- Park your car between the lines, do not take 2 spaces.
- Do NOT smoke or spit.
- Follow do not walk on the Grass signs.
- Hold the elevator door open for whoever is behind you.
- Be courteous to everyone in the courthouse.
- Dress professionally and cover tattoos with clothes if possible.
- Shine Shoes.
- Clean Nails.
- A belt should not be old and worn out.
- Ties should not be dirty.
- Clothes must be pressed & cleaned.
- Do not eat beans the night before.
Most parties agree The Law Wins Every Time and it is often not worth fighting “the law”…BUT YOU NEVER KNOW WHAT SWAYS A JUROR.
“TOP LAWYER” – California’s Prestige Magazine, Palm Springs Life (PI/DUI) 2011-19
“TOP LAWYER” – Inland Empire Magazine 2016- 2019
PERFECT 10.0 AVVO Peer Rating
“DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE OR TEXT AND GET A DUI OR ACCIDENT… CALL A TAXI, LYFT OR UBER….THEY ARE A LOT CHEAPER THAN CALLING ME”
Suggestions for future columns contact Dale Gribow at (760) 837-7500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.