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How do you fire your DUI Attorney?

Firing Your DUI Lawyer

If you have been arrested for a DUI or another crime, either you have been assigned a public defender by the court or you have decided to use your own money and hire a private DUI attorney. For various reasons, you may decide that your DUI lawyer is not doing his best to represent you and you feel like you need to make a change. Whether you want to switch from a public defender to private DUI attorney, or change one private DUI attorney for another, there are steps to follow in each situation.

Public DUI Lawyer

First, you need to decide whether your disagreements with your DUI lawyer are because of his insufficient abilities or if he is giving you unpleasant, but correct advice. Public defenders are proficient in criminal law and may give a candid breakdown of their client’s situation. If this sounds like your DUI attorney, don’t mistake his blunt advice for not caring about your DUI case. If you decide that you have legitimate concerns with your public DUI defender, make a list outlining the problems. Meet with your DUI attorney and go over your list with him to come to a resolution before you proceed in firing him. If you still cannot work it out and you wish to get a new DUI attorney, inform the DUI court in writing to fire your public DUI defender. What should be included in this letter? List your reasons, but be careful not to reveal any information that could help the prosecution build a DUI case against you. The court will schedule a hearing where you must state your reasons for wanting to change DUI lawyers and answer any DUI questions the judge may have. It is important to be professional and not argue with your DUI attorney. The judge will announce his decision either at the conclusion of the hearing or shortly afterward to limit delays in the DUI case. Be ready to tell the court if you want another public DUI defender appointed by the court, if you want to hire a private DUI attorney, or if you want to represent yourself.

Hiring a Private DUI Attorney

It is a little easier to fire your private DUI attorney. If he has not appeared in court on your behalf, you can just tell him that he is fired. If he has appeared in court for you, then the DUI lawyer has to get the judge’s permission to withdraw. If you hire another private DUI attorney, then the lawyers will handle the paperwork and inform the judge who the new DUI lawyer will be. Your DUI case will probably be delayed while the new DUI lawyer gets “up to speed” on your situation. If you fire your private DUI attorney, don’t expect to get any money back. Most retainer contracts state that the fee is non-refundable. If you decide to move in a different direction concerning your DUI attorney, it is good to convey your needs to your DUI lawyer and keep the lines of communication open so you both can stay on the same page and work together for your benefit.