1) For DUI in the State of Florida, the typical bail is set between $500 and $1500. However, this amount may be more for more serious charges. If this is a first offense, or a lesser crime, the defendant may be released without the need of bail. If bail is set, you must pay the full amount to the court, or provide 10% of the bail amount to a bondsman who will then post a bail bond in order to secure release. The advantage of using a bondsman is that you only need 10%. The disadvantage is that the 10% is gone no matter what the outcome. If cash bond is posted the money will be applied toward court costs if any and if the case is dropped it will be returned to the party that posted the bond.
2) Speak to someone as soon as possible after the incident. Let them listen to your speech and thought processes. The officer will likely say that your speech was slurred or mumbled and might say that you were confused. A conversation will give you an opportunity to have someone hear your voice and see if it sounds abnormal. Jail conversations can be recorded so this is not a time to admit guilt. Just explain your situation without admitting incriminating information.
3) Speak to a Daytona Beach DUI attorney about obtaining 42 day temporary permit. This will buy you time to challenge the administrative suspension of your license. You must take action within 10 days or your license will be suspended administratively for a refusal or breath or blood alcohol content above .08%. The form is simple and the fee is only $25 but many drivers do not request the formal review hearing and lose their license administratively before stepping into a court room.
4) Try to document your memory of what occurred the evening of the arrest. It might not be in your best interest to testify but your attorney will be in a much better position assist you if you can accurately recall the events of the evening you were arrested.
5) Try to save receipts from the evening and if a credit card was used try to get documentation. Obviously for some clients this will not be helpful but the defense is not required to disclose information unless it will be used at motion or in trial. On the defense side of DUI cases we often hear “I only had two drinks all evening but I refused because I didn’t know”. This is a way you can prove it.
6) Speak with and obtain a list of any sobriety witnesses. Without witnesses It is your word against the officer’s. The state will try to discount your word by arguing that you were under the influence and might not accurately remember the events. Unbiased witness testimony goes a long way. Your mother’s testimony might also be helpful but the best witness is a witness that doesn’t have a dog in the fight. You might need to act quickly because if you do not know the individual it might become more difficult over time to find them.
7) If you have any medical conditions that could affect your balance obtain documentation of the condition. If you have not been to a doctor for some time this might be a good time to get a checkup. It is thought that some digestive disorders can impact a breath test. Diabetes with high or low blood sugar can also alter a breath test. Low blood sugar could cause an individual to appear impaired. Some dental disorders might also alter breath test results.
8) Obtain and document information about the scene of the stop. Take pictures of the roads, stop signs or lights, street markings……. Whatever is relevant to your DUI case. It is possible that lines could get repainted or lights or signs could be changed.
9) If you have been administratively suspended or a DUI conviction or even if a reduction to reckless is the likely outcome it is beneficial to enroll in the DUI classes. It can also be beneficial to complete the community service if a criminal plea is likely. The reason for this is that you would have time on probation to complete the sanctions but probation charges a monthly fee. If you have the probation completed it will be easier because you will have nothing to do but show up and you will be eligible for early termination.