If you have recently been arrested for DUI in Los Angeles, you may be weighing your options. Even if you think that you were not really impaired by drugs or alcohol when you were arrested, you may be considering just pleading guilty. Lots of people consider entering a guilty plea, especially when it is a first DUI offense, in order to just get the entire process over with. In most DUI cases, you should at least speak to an experienced L.A. DUI defense attorney before taking any action in your DUI case.
After your DUI arrest, your first appearance in front of a judge will be at your arraignment. This is your chance to enter an initial plea. What many people do not realize is that if you plea' not guilty' you can always change your plea to guilty later for any reason. If you automatically plea guilty, you will are accepting responsibility for the charge and essentially admitting that you were driving while impaired. This leaves you open to whatever sentence the judge decides to give you. Depending on your criminal and driving history and the circumstances surrounding your arrest, you could face jail time, license suspension, steep fines, probation, alcohol treatment classes and more. There is no way to know for sure what your sentence will be beforehand and you will have no choice but to accept it afterwards.
Many experienced legal professionals will advise clients to plead not guilty at first in order to gain access to the prosecution's evidence. Once the case against you is clear, you and your experienced lawyer will be able to decide if your charges are worth fighting. Even if you still want to plead guilty, an attorney can work with the prosecution to help you get preferential sentencing or even get your charges reduced.