DUI in Florida
Who better to handle your Florida DUI case then the firm whose partner wrote the “Florida DUI Survival Guide“. Aside from writing the book on Florida DUI law, David Haenel was the former 2004 State of Florida DUI prosecutor of the year. He has lectured in the area of Florida DUI for years, including a lecture in 2010 that he and his partner Darren Finebloom gave to the Florida County Court Judges in Clearwater.
In calendar year 2009, there were a total of 63,019 dui citations issued to motorists in Florida. Under Florida statute 316.193, DUI is a misdemeanor in most instances. However, unlike other areas of Florida criminal law, DUI is riddled with very specific timelines in which certain legal challenges must be made. For example, a motorist only has 10 days from the date of an arrest to challenge the administrative suspension of the driver’s license. When a motorist is arrested for DUI and the person blows over a .08 or refuses to blow at all, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will take action to suspend your driver’s license. However, within 10 days of the arrest a motorist or attorney can request a formal review hearing. The DHSMV will issues a temporary permit which allows the motorist to continue to drive for approximately 42 days for restricted reasons. Within that 42 days the DHSMV will hold a hearing to determine of the administrative license suspension should be invalidated.
Whatever is happening at the DHSMV has no bearing on the criminal case. Some counties require us to the notify the clerk that we are entering a not guilty plea on behalf of our client while other counties will give our client a court date at the time of the arrest. In any event, gathering evidence for the criminal case quickly is critical to any plausible defense of the DUI charge. The state attorney will begin working with us to provide “discovery” material which is all of the evidence and names of witnesses that they have in their possession and intend to use against us if the case ever goes to trial. Our office will also request any videotapes from the arresting agency if there are any. Those videotapes will have your field sobriety tests and possibly breath test room evidence.