It Is Always Advisable to Fight a DUI Charge in Marin County
Opting to go to trial may be very well worth the risk to try and avoid a DUI versus just saying, “Okay, I’m guilty. That’s it.” because the ramifications of a DUI can be so severe. I encourage people to fight these. There are a lot of lawyers who just don’t like to go to trial or who don’t feel like they have the skills, so they never go to trial. There are attorneys in Marin County who call themselves DUI lawyers who have never been to trial, which is too bad. I think some of them are very good lawyers and should be going to trial.
That Is Why It Is Important to Retain an Experienced Attorney with Skills to Go to Trial if Needed
If you want a chance to win your cases, you want a lawyer who will go to trial, and that’s one of the questions you need to ask a lawyer. Do you ever go to trial on DUI cases? Have you been to trial in Marin County? It’s something where if the attorney says no, they’ve never gone to trial in Marin County; you may want to look elsewhere if you want that option. This is because you don’t want to switch attorneys when you decide you want to go to trial.
There Are Fees Associated with DUI Conviction Including a Community Service Fee; Late Payments Can Be Subject to a $300 Additional Penalty
Interviewer: Are there any fees associated with community service?
Aaron: Yeah. Community service is a fee you would just pay it to the clerk’s office. A fine for a DUI, like in any other county in the San Francisco Bay area can be paid in installment plans. You just have to be very careful when you’re set up to one of these plans because if you’re ever late, they can and almost always will charge you an additional one time $300 penalty for being late.
If you fail to pay, they turn it over to the state and it becomes a tax issue and a wage garnish issue, and so you really want to be on that. When you sign up for a payment plan, make sure that whatever you sign up for is something you can afford to pay.
You Will Be Required to Pay Additional Small Fines if Convicted, Such as the DUI Victim’s Fund
Interviewer: That’s’ some late fee. The other fees I was looking at, there are certain funds. There’s one, the DUI Victim’s Fund.
Aaron: Yeah. There are all sorts of different small fees. The fine is approximately $390. Then they have penalties and assessments which go to all these different government codes and that’s what gets it so expensive. There’s a victim’s indemnity fund which used to be $100 fine. Now, it’s $140.
That’s required on all misdemeanor convictions. In some counties, there’s a $50 fee, there’s a $4 what we call a helicopter fee. There’s a collection fee of $30 or $35 to set up a payment plan.
By Aaron Bortel
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