Seattle DUI Defense Attorneys

You were arrested for a DUI. Now what?

 

We’re betting you have several burning questions you want answered, which is why we created this page. Here you’ll find simple and straightforward answers to the questions that really matter to you right now. Despite this, the best way to make sure all of your questions are answered is to simply pick up the phone and give us a call at 206-209-5585 or shoot us a text at: 206-858-1380 for a free confidential consultation.

Your THREE BIG Questions

Am I going to lose my license?
Am I going to get sent to jail?
What sort of fines am I looking at?

If you're convicted of a DUI, you will face certain mandatory minimum penalties.  So to find out the answer to your THREE BIG questions, select which of the following statements applies to you:

My Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Result was LESS THAN .15 (or there was no chemical result at all)

Offense No.1st Offense in 7 years2nd Offense in 7 years3rd or 4th Offense in 7 years
License90 day suspension; Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Required2-year revocation;
IID Required
3-year revocation;
IID Required
Minimum Jail1 day in custody; OR 15 days Electronic Home Monitoring (EHM)30 days in custody +
60 days EHM
90 days in custody +
120 days EHM
Minimum Fine$940$1,195$2,045

My BAC Result was .15 OR HIGHER (or I refused to take a chemical test)

Offense No.1st Offense in 7 years2nd Offense in 7 years3rd or 4th Offense in 7 years
License1 Year revocation; OR 2 year revocation if BAC Refusal; IID Required900-day revocation; OR
3 year revocation if BAC Refusal; IID Required
4 year revocation; IID Required
Minimum Jail2 days in custody; OR 30 days EHM45 days in custody + 90 days EHM120 days in custody + 150 days EHM
Minimum Fine$1,195$1,620$2,895

I have no idea what my BAC was!

That’s OK! If you took a breath test, we can locate your results online for many courts. If you took a blood test, we can submit a public records request to find out this information sooner rather than later. We will also get the results from the DOL and from the prosecutor’s office

Common DUI Questions

What does the prosecutor have to prove against me in order to be found guilty of a DUI?

To be found guilty of driving or of being in physical control of a vehicle under the influence, at least one of two things must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt: you (1) had a .08%+ BAC or 5.00+ ng/ml THC; and/or (2) you were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of driving regardless of your actual BAC/THC level.

I wasn't even driving but have been charged with "Physical Control" of a Vehicle While Under the Influence. What is this?

There is a separate DUI charge in Washington State called Physical Control of a Vehicle While Under the Influence. Unfortunately, the penalties for being convicted of a physical control charge are the same as a regular DUI.  There are no specific jury instructions to truly define what constitutes physical control, but where we most often see it is the example of where an officer does not actually observe you driving but rather finds you sitting/sleeping in the driver’s seat of your car with or without the engine running.  

There is an affirmative defense for physical control that is not available for a DUI.  If you were parked safely off the roadway then you can argue you are not guilty of physical control. We would have to burden of proving you were safely off the roadway by a preponderance of the evidence.  Factors to be considered by the trier of fact for this defense include any relevant evidence such as how much "control" you had over the vehicle and the exact location you are parked.

My BAC was under .08% and I’m still getting charged with a DUI. What Gives?
A surprising fact to many people is that you can still get charged with a DUI even if you are under a .08%. However, in these situations the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were in fact under the influence of the alcohol and this cause your “ability to drive a motor vehicle [to be] lessened in any appreciable degree. The prosecutor’s generally try to support their theory on this by pointing out poor/erratic driving as the reason for the stop followed by numerous objective signs of intoxication (bloodshot/watery eyes, odor of alcohol, slurred speech, etc.) and poor performance on Field Sobriety Tests.
What other consequences am I looking at with a DUI conviction?
The courts in Washington typically require you to jump through a few additional hoops if you end up with a DUI conviction on your record, including completion of the following:
  • Victim Impact Panel
  • ADIS
  • Alcohol Evaluation/Treatment plan
  • We have links on this page for where to sign up for these and can explain more about the requirements if you would like to give us a call for a free confidential consultation.
What are some of the potential results I can expect?

Because every case has its unique set of facts and circumstances, it’s not possible for us to tell you what result you will get on your particular case until we have had a chance to fully litigate it. That said, here are some potential results; all of which we have achieved for our clients:

  • Dismissal of charges in the pre-trial stages
  • Not guilty verdict after trial
  • Reduction of charges to one of the following:
    • Negligent Driving
    • Reckless Driving
    • Reckless Endangerment
  • Reduction of penalties
  • Deferred Prosecution

Get in touch with us for a full explanation of what these outcomes mean and how we can achieve them.

I’m under 21, do different rules apply?
Yes, you can get a “minor DUI” if you have .02% BAC or greater. Give us a call for a full explanation of the differences between a regular DUI and a Minor DUI.
What can you promise me?
  • You’re not going to find a more qualified team to represent you, and we are going to get you the best possible result given the facts and circumstances of your particular case.
  • We work really hard and are very accessible to our clients. Try calling or texting us right now; if we don’t pick up right away, we will get back to you very fast.
How will you get me the best possible result?
The short answer is through hard work. Here’s a little closer look: Some of the legal issues we analyze while handling your DUI case:
  • Probable cause for the stop
  • Probable cause for the arrest
  • Admissibility of your statements
  • Validity/Performance of Field Sobriety Tests
  • Validity or any breath or blood tests
Some of the mitigating factors we introduce and discuss during negotiation:
  • Humanize you to the prosecutor; we want to know everything about you. Give us your life story. We will memorize it and then be able to talk to the prosecutor very intelligently about you; as if we have known you for years.
  • Gather a bunch of character reference letters for you.
  • Get proactive and have you undergo an alcohol/drug assessment at the early stages of the case
  • Explain the impact this matter will have on your job and family
If I retain your services, are you going to get my charges reduced or dismissed?
The only answer I can give you at this point is “it depends…” I know, not totally satisfying, but it is honest. If another attorney promises you more than that, then they are just trying to take your money. Get out of their office (or hand up the phone) as fast as you can.
How much are your services going to cost me?
We charge fair, competitive flat fees for our services. Here’s the problem you face with a lot of other attorneys: The ultra-expensive firms are not going to get you a better result than we are, and the dirt cheap guys aren’t going do anything for you at all. That’s where we come in. While we certainly don’t have the lowest fees in the Puget Sound, we won’t make you take out a second mortgage either. With Will & Will, you get Cadillac results, at Camry prices.
Do you exclusively handle DUI’s?
No, we don’t play marketing games like some other attorneys out there. We’re well-rounded and handle ALL criminal matters, including DUI’s…and not just a few DUI’s here and there. We’ve successfully handled nearly a thousand DUI cases over the years. Our secret is simple: we focus on what matters – getting you the best possible outcome.
I have a court date coming up ASAP, what do I do?!?

Hire an attorney! Is this answer self-serving? Yes. Despite this, is it still the best possible thing you can do? YES.

Helpful DUI Links

Department of Licensing Hearings

Click HERE to Reserve Your DOL Hearing TODAY. A few Facts:

  • After you are arrested for a DUI, you only have 20 days to contact the DOL.
  • If you miss this deadline, you lose your right to have a hearing to try and save your license from being suspended.
  • The DOL is going to charge you $375 to make this request.

So what happens at the DOL hearing? A few facts:

  • A DOL Employee with the title of “hearing officer” acts as both the judge and jury over your license. They are supposed to be impartial, but the truth is they are biased against you. There is no real judge to intervene.
  • Sometimes we subpoena the police officer to testify, sometimes we don’t; it depends on the circumstances.
  • We typically recommend that you do not testify at a DOL hearing, since whatever you say can be used against you in the criminal case. That said, in some cases, your testimony can be very helpful.
  • Make no mistake about it; even for experienced attorneys, DOL hearings are tough to win because the deck is stacked against us. Despite this, we have found loopholes that have led to many victories over the years.