DUI Defense Attorney in Smyrna GA
If you’re facing a DUI charge, it’s imperative to seek help from an experienced and dedicated Smyrna DUI Lawyer. Jim Yeargan is an accomplished Smyrna DUI lawyer with nearly 15 years of experience. As one of the most respected DUI lawyers in Georgia, Jim Yeargan is known for his successful record and commitment to clients. If you’re looking for a dedicated Smyrna DUI lawyer, Jim Yeargan and his staff are here to help you with your case.
The first step to building a case is to get help. The sooner you contact us for help, the sooner we can begin defending your rights. We work with clients in Smyrna and the surrounding areas. We’re here to answer any questions you may have and are available for support all hours of the day, every day of the year.
Specialized lawyers that focus on DUI charges: Yeargan & Kert, LLC
While many defendants may seek a general lawyer for their case, finding a lawyer who specializes in DUI cases can make all the difference. DUI laws are complex and serious in nature, with fine intricacies capable of making or breaking a case. Due to the seriousness of these cases, you can benefit greatly from having a Smyrna DUI lawyer by your side that knows how these cases work in Smyrna.
Jim Yeargan has years of experience on both sides. Early in his career, Jim Yeargan acted as a prosecutor in DUI courts. This valuable experience provides him with the knowledge needed to succeed. He understands how DUI cases operate and use this comprehension in his favor. Jim Yeargan is also familiar with the prosecutors and judges that will be involved in your case, allowing him to create a strategic defense plan. Jim Yeargan and his staff devote all of their resources and skill to these specific cases only, making the entire team proficient in their field.
Take the First Step To Protect Your Right To Drive: The 30 Day Rule
Those arrested for a DUI in Smyrna, Georgia, should contact a Smyrna DUI lawyer immediately to protect their right to drive. There is a period of time following the arrest to prevent a license suspension. Those arrested have 30 calendar days to file for an Administrative License Hearing, or ALS. Without this hearing, your license can be automatically suspended for up to a year. This can have serious repercussions on your work and personal life. If you’re arrested for a DUI, it is crucial to call Jim Yeargan ‘s office immediately. Jim Yeargan and his staff will start the process as soon as possible, helping to avoid the license suspension. The sooner you give us a call, the sooner we can file for the Administrative License Hearing and begin constructing a defense plan for your case.
The Consequences of a DUI Charge in Smyrna, Georgia
There is a slew of negative consequences that follow a DUI charge. Unfortunately, these repercussions can follow you throughout your life. Not only can you lose your driver’s license, but you can experience even worse penalties. The number of fines that follow a DUI charge can put you in a financial bind that can take years to get out of. A DUI can even lead to significant jail time. In the long run, a DUI conviction will forever be present on your permanent driving record. This will cause your insurance rates to skyrocket. On top of it all, the charge will be on your criminal record for anyone to see, having serious consequences on your personal and professional life.
Get Help From a Smyrna DUI Lawyer with Proven Success: Yeargan & Kert, LLC
If you are arrested for a DUI in Smyrna, Georgia, it is important to know that there is help available. An arrest isn’t the end of the process. The office of Jim Yeargan understands that it is a difficult time filled with anxiety. We’re here to help you through the process. You need to act swiftly and seek help from a successful Smyrna DUI lawyer that will fight for your rights.
With over 5,000 cases in Georgia under his belt, Jim Yeargan can help defend your case and achieve a desirable outcome. Many satisfied clients can attest to his legal prowess and skill, as evident with a large number of positive reviews on numerous different websites. Instead of worrying about your future, give him a call as soon as your arrest is made. His offices are available around the clock. There is someone to answer your call 24 hours a day, every day of the year.
An Arrest Doesn’t Automatically Mean You’re Guilty
Contrary to popular belief, those arrested for a DUI in Smyrna, Georgia, do not have to plead guilty. DUI cases have many subtle details that can affect the overall outcome. Without an experienced Smyrna DUI lawyer, you may feel that pleading guilty is your only option. In doing so, you are putting your entire future at risk. A skilled Smyrna DUI lawyer will examine your case, taking even the most minute detail into account. They may find details that can change your case for the better.
If you’re arrested, you have every right to challenge your case. A proficient attorney can help you contest the charges against you. You can challenge a number of different aspects in your case, including the procedures during your arrest, the reasoning behind your arrest, and any evidence that may be used against you. Jim Yeargan and his staff will approach your case strategically, protecting all of your rights. They’ll inform you of your options and present a defense strategy that is both aggressive and reasonable.
A Smyrna DUI Lawyer That Knows the Process: Yeargan & Kert, LLC
Laws concerning a DUI are complex and can vary throughout the country. It is important to get help from a Smyrna DUI lawyer that knows the local laws and court proceedings regarding a DUI case. Jim Yeargan understands the process of a DUI in Smyrna, Georgia. He has practiced law for nearly 15 years, providing him with more than enough experience to work on your case. His knowledge of local courts allows him to guide you through the process while protecting your rights.
The Process of DUI in Smyrna, Georgia
There are a number of different ways in which police officers can arrest you for your DUI. If an officer suspects you of a DUI, they must stop your vehicle. They can do this by pulling you over while on the road or at a DUI checkpoint.
Getting Arrested at a DUI Checkpoint
Also referred to as roadblocks, checkpoints are designated areas set up by law enforcement to randomly check for DUIs and other offenses. While many drivers see these as random inconveniences, there are actually many guidelines that police officers must follow. These roadblocks must be pre-approved prior to their set up. Officers must also check vehicles at random. Because of the specific guidelines set up concerning roadblocks, there are many ways in which a driver’s rights may be violated.
It is important for drivers to understand the process and legalities surrounding DUI checkpoints in Smyrna, Georgia. Those arrested during a checkpoint may be able to get their case dismissed completely. If this is the case, you should contact Jim Yeargan immediately. Jim Yeargan and his staff will evaluate the events that lead up to your arrest. They’ll closely examine the events that took place during the roadblock to determine if your rights were violated.
Getting Pulled Over and Arrested
If you are pulled over and arrested for a DUI, there are a number of ways your rights could have been violated due to improper actions of the arresting officer. One way your rights could have been violated is the act of getting pulled over in the first place. Officers must have a valid reason to pull you over. This can be a number of different things, from erratic driving to a standard traffic violation. Officers must present and record a valid reason for pulling you over. Otherwise, your case could be dismissed.
Once the officer pulls you over for a valid reason, they can test your sobriety. However, they must also have a reason to suspect you for being intoxicated. This can be the smell of alcohol on your breath or presence of alcohol containers in the vehicle. If they have a reason, they can administer a field sobriety test or a blood alcohol test. Failing a test entitles police officers to arrest you on the spot.
While the process may seem cut and dry, there are many gray areas. Police officers aren’t perfect. They can easily violate regulations and your rights during the process. If you are arrested, you need to call the offices of Jim Yeargan immediately. Calling us while you are being processed for jail will allow us to start helping you as soon as possible. With staff present all hours of the day, someone will always be there to take your call and begin the defense process.
Field Sobriety Tests
Field sobriety tests are commonly used to see if a driver is under the influence of alcohol or other substances. It’s important that drivers understand how the tests work and what is involved so that they are prepared should they ever find themselves having to take one. Understanding the field sobriety test will also allow drivers to better understand their rights.
The assessments within the field sobriety tests may vary. Generally, they consist of a number of assessments that examine a driver’s balance, dexterity, and motor skills. Officers will ask drivers to perform certain tasks. Typically, failure of these tests act as evidence that the driver in question is under the influence of a substance.
Some of the more common tests in a field sobriety test include walking a straight line. Officers may use tape to create a straight line or use natural seams in sidewalk pavement. Drivers will have to walk along the line while retaining their balance. Additional tests, like raising their foot six inches off the ground for 30 seconds may be used. Officers may also ask the driver to recite the alphabet, follow an object with their eyes, or touch their finger to their nose.
After completing these tests the officer will ask the driver to submit to a portable breath test (PBT).
Drivers should be aware that the test is most likely being recorded. Most police vehicles in Smyrna, Georgia, are equipped with cameras mounted on the dash. These cameras are used to protect both the officer and the general public. They automatically record traffic violation stops and can be used as evidence in a court of law. Prosecuting lawyers may use the footage to prove that you failed the test while defense lawyers can use it to prove that you passed, even if the initial report states otherwise.
There are specific guidelines that must be adhered to when administering these tests. While they may seem like they are an effective way to test sobriety, certain factors may cause a driver to fail them. Furthermore, officers may not administer them correctly. If a field sobriety test leads to your arrest, you need to get help from a Smyrna DUI lawyer that understands how these tests work.
Jim Yeargan and his team will thoroughly evaluate the test and how it was administered. They will scrutinize the footage taken of your test and traffic stop to determine if your rights were protected. They’ll also help to establish if the administered test was valid and fair.
Blood and Breath Tests
Blood and breath tests are often used after a field sobriety test. They are chemical tests, making them a much more accurate way to determine if a driver is intoxicated. Chemical tests determine the amount of alcohol present in the body. There are two common types of chemical tests: blood and breath. The most accurate form of chemical testing is a blood alcohol concentration test or BAC.
BAC tests measure the amount of alcohol in a person’s blood. The result of a blood alcohol concentration test is one of the strongest pieces of evidence in court. To pass the test, drivers must be below a certain threshold. In Georgia, drivers measuring a blood alcohol content over 0.08% are considered to be driving under the influence. This is for drivers over the age of 21. Drivers under the age of 21 are considered to be under the influence if their blood alcohol content is 0.02% or higher.
The laws surrounding a BAC test are complex as well. While a driver can refuse to take the test, they will lose their driver’s license. This is due to the implied consent law in Georgia. Drivers consent to this law the moment they obtain and use their driver’s license. The law states that as a driver, you are implying that you automatically consent to a BAC test when it is requested. Drivers can refuse the test, but in doing so they may also lose their license.
Multiple DUI Offenses in Smyrna, Georgia
DUI offenses are taken very seriously in Smyrna, Georgia. Officers are constantly looking for intoxicated drivers, and are encouraged to make arrests when they have suspicions. These offenses are a prime concern resulting in severe repercussions and penalties. Even if it is your first offense, you face dire consequences that could affect the rest of your life. It is important to get help from a Smyrna DUI lawyer immediately.
First DUI Offense
While many people may think that the courts go light on first-time offenders, that is simply not the case. The first DUI arrest and conviction can still lead to significant fines and jail time. First-time offenders can face up to $1000 in fines, community service hours, courses, and much more. It can even lead to up to a year of jail time and suspension of your driver’s license for a year. First-time offenders shouldn’t take the arrest lightly. Instead, you should contact the offices of Jim Yeargan as soon as possible after the arrest. They can help defend your case and lessen the consequences.
Second DUI Offense
Second-time offenders face even more repercussions. If you are arrested for a DUI a second time, you face increased fines, community service, and jail time. As for license suspension, those arrested for a DUI can lose their license for up to three years. Not only that, but once that three-year suspension period is over, convicted offenders may have an ignition lock installed in their vehicle that prevents them from starting their car unless they submit to a BAC test located within the device. To avoid these ramifications, it is imperative that you contact Jim Yeargan. His offices are available at all hours of the day, 7 days a week for help.
Third DUI Offense
In the eyes of the court, a third offense is a severe violation. If convicted, you face increased jail time, community service, probation, and up to $5000 in fines. Your driver’s license may also be suspended for up to 5 years. A third DUI arrest can affect every part of your life, from your job to your education. It is important to take the third arrest, like the first, very seriously. The offices of Jim Yeargan will fight to protect your rights and future. They will take the case very seriously. The office is available for help anytime.
DUI Court Process in Smyrna
DUI cases can be scary and confusing for anyone. Court proceedings are complex to those who aren’t part of the system. To ease your anxiety, Jim Yeargan and his staff are here to answer any and all of your questions regarding the court process in Smyrna. They’ll keep you informed throughout the entire process so that you are constantly aware of what is going on and what lies ahead. It is important to know how the court process works so that you can stay calm and prepared.
If you’re arrested for a DUI within Smyrna, Georgia, by a Smyrna police officer or Georgia State Patrol, your case will go to the Smyrna Municipal Court. Cases in Smyrna are filtered based on the type and severity of the case. Misdemeanors, traffic violations, and local ordinance violations go to the Smyrna Municipal Court.
Upon arrest, you will be presented with your citation or bond. This document provides you with valuable information regarding your case. Among this information will be the date of your arraignment. Your arraignment is, essentially, an event in which you are informed of the formal charges against you.
During an arraignment, your charges will be read to you by a judge. The arraignment hearing is the first part of the process, so it is imperative that you are present. During the hearing, the judge will notify you of your rights and inquire if you’ve obtained legal representation or intend to do so. During the hearing, the judge will also inform you about the possible pleas you can make to your case.
With a DUI case, there are three possible pleas you can make. You can either plead guilty, not guilty or no contest. The plea you make can determine how the case proceeds. With a guilty plea, you are admitting that you committed the crime, essentially saying that you did drive under the influence of a substance. If you plead guilty during your arraignment, you will be sentenced. If you plead not guilty, you are denying that you committed the crime. With this plea, the judge will schedule a future court date. Your case will then go to trial. With a no contest plea, also known as a Nolo Contrende plea, you don’t plead guilty or not guilty. Instead, you are not contesting the legal proceedings against you.
There are serious consequences for not attending your arraignment hearing and any other court dates that may follow. Should you miss your court date, the judge will charge you with Failure to Appear, resulting in a suspension of your driver’s license by the Georgia Department of Driver Services. To avoid the suspension, you must be able to prove that you resolved your case with the proper documentation within 28 days of your Failure to Appear. After 28 days, the suspension goes into effect.
In addition to a Failure to Appear charge, missing your court date could get you arrested. A judge may choose to issue a bench warrant, which means that you can be taken to jail by Smyrna law enforcement. Law enforcement can take you to jail at any time once the bench warrant is issued. Once you are arrested, you will have to pay a cash bond to be released. In doing so, you’ll get a new court date that you are required to attend. Failure to do so the second time around will result in a forfeit of your case to prosecution. This means that you lost your case and will be found guilty for the charges against you.
Help From a Smyrna DUI Lawyer: Yeargan & Kert, LLC
DUI cases in Smyrna, Georgia, shouldn’t be handled by someone without experience. Failure to get help from a skilled lawyer will only make the process more difficult and could lead to a loss of your case. A seasoned Smyrna DUI lawyer will ensure that every part of the process is done correctly, from filling out the appropriate paperwork to defending your case in litigation.
Jim Yeargan and his experienced staff will guide you throughout this difficult and confusing time. They offer a free consultation to get you started. During this consultation, you’ll be able to see and understand what Jim Yeargan can do for you.
Once you have an experienced Smyrna DUI lawyer on your side, the process of creating a defense will begin. This starts with obtaining records regarding your arrest. These records will play an important role in your case, so your Smyrna DUI lawyer will examine these records closely. Not only are arrest records and important documents used to create a defense, but also the video recordings of the events leading up to your arrest. Because these videos chronicle the entire arrest, they can be used in your favor. Your lawyer will scrutinize every part of the video, from the reasoning behind your traffic stop to communication with the officers and any tests you may have taken.
The important documents regarding your arrest include police reports and arrest records. These documents contain a wealth of information regarding the events that took place. This includes details recorded by the arresting officer and any other particulars surrounding your case. These documents are easily accessible to defense lawyers. The discovery process requires the prosecution to share information with the defense lawyer. This is done so that the same information is shared, allowing defense lawyers to create your case.
These records and documents help lawyers determine where your case stands. The defense plan will be built around these records, as they help lawyers determine if the proper procedures were taken during your arrest and if your rights were violated. In addition to helping create a defense plan, these records will allow lawyers to provide you with information about how your case will be viewed by the court. Thanks to their experience, and knowledge of the system, lawyers are capable of informing you of where the judge and prosecution will likely stand on your case. From there, lawyers will be able to decide how to progress.
Plea deals are another way an experienced Smyrna DUI lawyer can help save your future. Defense lawyers can usually arrange these deals with the prosecution using information about your arrest. This process is best handled by a proficient defense lawyer, as it is not a simple process by any means. A Smyrna DUI lawyer will have to defend you based on the particulars of your case and you as a person. Many things will be taken into account before a reduced sentence is offered. This includes the actual arrest and your criminal record. Usually, reduced sentences are offered if this is your first offense, you have a clean record, and good facts surrounding your case. Lawyers can also assert that the arrest was a single mistake that you will not repeat. Overall, it is a tricky and involved process that requires the skill of a seasoned Smyrna DUI lawyer.
A plea deal will routinely involve some form of punishment. However, punishment is considerably less severe than a normal sentence. Most commonly, fines and community service are required. A DUI Smyrna DUI lawyer will work to reach an outcome that is good for both parties. In many cases, plea bargains are reached simply because the case is too costly to proceed. The prosecution may find that the time and cost of a trial aren’t worth it. A knowledgeable defense attorney will use this to their advantage. In the event that a plea bargain can’t be reached, the case will go to trial in front of a judge or jury.
Jim Yeargan has years of experience negotiating plea bargains. Thanks to his time as a prosecuting attorney, he understands how to negotiate these deals. He’ll work persistently to reach a plea deal that is fair.
Pretrial Diversion: Minor in Possession, Possession of Marijuana, and Other Charges
If you have a clean criminal record with no issues, you may be able to avoid having a charge placed on your permanent record. Smyrna Municipal Court has a Pretrial Diversion Program for first-time offenders with a clean record. If eligible, you’ll be assigned a number of tasks or requirements, such as a fine, drug and alcohol screenings, alcohol treatment, and probation time. However, these requirements are less severe than standard penalties and allow you to continue on with your life without the burden of a conviction.
The Addition of an Administrative Case
If you are arrested for a DUI, you are not only part of a DUI case, but also an administrative case. In Smyrna, Georgia the administrative case is separate to the criminal case but occurs alongside it. While it may seem like the criminal case is more important you must attend both hearings. The Georgia Department of Driver Services handles driver’s license suspensions for the State o Georgia.
An administrative case focuses on the use of a Breathalyzer test, or refusal to take one. If you had a blood alcohol concentration above the limit or refused to take the test, your driving privileges may be taken away for up to 12 months. Upon your arrest, you have 30 calendar days to file an appeal to prevent the suspension of your license. This is when a lawyer’s help is paramount. They can begin the appeal process immediately, and help you through the hearing when your appeal is granted.
The administrative hearing will cover all of the aspects surrounding your breathalyzer test, or refusal to submit to one. This includes how the test was administered, if there were grounds to administer it, and if your rights were protected.
Things To Be Aware of About DUIs in Smyrna, Georgia
Some DUI cases in Smyrna have additional issues that lead to multiple charges. These issues can make a case more complicated, making it even more important to get help from a Smyrna DUI lawyer like Jim Yeargan.
Underage DUIs in Smyrna
If you are under the legal drinking age of 21 in Smyrna and are arrested for a DUI, your case automatically becomes more complex. The blood alcohol concentration only has to be 0.02% for drivers under the age of 21 for an arrest. In this case, drivers will be charged with an underage DUI. There may also be additional charges compounded onto a DUI charge due to underage drinking. Furthermore, those charged with an underage DUI will not be able to get a special driving permit for work or school if they get their driver’s license suspended. Jim Yeargan has experience working on these complicated cases, allowing him to provide you with the help you need.
DUIs and Child Endangerment
If a driver is arrested for a DUI in Smyrna and has a child under the age of 14 in the vehicle with them, they may be charged with child endangerment. This could lead to a loss of custody, serious criminal charges, higher fines, and enhanced license suspensions. These situations will have a huge effect on your life, so it is important to contact the offices of Jim Yeargan immediately. These cases need to be handled with care. Jim Yeargan understands that rights concerning your child are at hand and will work to defend them.
DUI and Drugs
Contrary to popular belief, a DUI charge isn’t only designated to those who are under the influence of alcohol. Drivers under the influence of drugs can also be charged with a DUI. Furthermore, the drug in question doesn’t even have to be illegal. Prescription drugs, such as painkillers and sleep aids, can also affect the way you drive. If you are suspected to be under the influence of a drug, prescription or not, you can be charged with a DUI.
Unlike alcohol intoxication, there isn’t a defined legal limit or definition of drug intoxication. Because of this, these cases can be incredibly tricky. Jim Yeargan has experience working on these particular cases and can navigate the court system to protect your future. If you experience a DUI drug arrest, you need to call Jim Yeargan ‘s office immediately for guidance and help.
Much like drug and alcohol DUI arrests, officers must have a valid reason to pull you over for a marijuana charge. Once they have stopped you, they can arrest you for a drug-related DUI if they have reason to believe you are under the influence, such as the smell of marijuana.
Those found to be under the influence and have under an ounce of marijuana on them can be charged with possession. You don’t even have to be behind the wheel to be charged with possession if you have under an ounce on you. Because these charges are unique to a standard DUI, they can be difficult to navigate. If you are charged with a DUI and marijuana possession, give Jim Yeargan ‘s office a call to discuss your options.
DUI and Vehicular Homicide in Smyrna
Accidents involving death are always taken seriously. In Smyrna, Georgia all parties involved are typically tested for blood alcohol content. If drugs or alcohol had a part in causing the accident, the case becomes even more serious. Those found to be driving under the influence can be charged with Vehicular Homicide, a felony charge.
A Vehicular Homicide charge can destroy your future. Not only will the felony charge be placed on your record, but you may have to spend years in prison. Neglecting to get experienced representation and help could prove to be a life-changing mistake. If you find yourself in this situation, let Jim Yeargan and his staff work to protect your future.
If you are facing a DUI charge in Smyrna, Georgia, call us immediately. These cases should be taken seriously. Waiting to get help is not an option. We’re here to help you any hour of the day, every single day of the year.