What Sets Your Law Firm Apart In Handling Reinstatement Hearings?
There are a lot of attorneys that have expertise in this area, so I’m can’t tell you that I’m the only one you can hire to get a positive outcome, because that’s clearly not the case. What I would say is that I’ve been doing this now since 1988, and I used to be a state’s attorney for many years. I prosecuted many misdemeanor and felony DUIs. I prosecuted in a criminal courthouse and I was, through my prosecution, involved in people receiving convictions of DUIs. As a result of that conviction, their license was then revoked for the same DUI. Now, for the past 24 years, I defend the same cases I used to prosecute. I not only defend the criminal case in court, and I try to avoid a conviction for DUI so I can avoid my clients having to do Secretary of State hearings.
I then take my representation a step further when I represent them in criminal court. If we don’t get the results we are looking for, and their license is revoked, I can then easily transition from defending an individual in the criminal court to representing them in front of a Secretary of State hearing committee or board to try and get back their license. I can see if I am handling somebody’s criminal defense matter, and that if the case is not going in the right direction, I most certainly can get them signed up for an evaluation or a treatment that will not only will satisfy the criminal court, in terms of the penalty that the judge in the criminal court is going to levy on them, but I use the same documentation that we use to try and get them a license back in front of the Secretary of State.
Essentially I am able to handle a case from the beginning, when the person walks into my office because he was arrested last night for DUI, all of the way to the end of the case, which is where if their license was revoked, in some situations, we are able to get them back. Many people who handle Secretary of State matters do not have the background that I have, nor are a lot of people in a position to essentially represent the client from the beginning of the process all the way to the end.
Is It True That You Always Get Denied At Your First Hearing?
You do not always get denied at your first hearing. The majority of times, we can get somebody a work permit or a restricted driving permit at the very least. The chances of you being successful at going down by yourself, and not being represented by an attorney with expertise with Secretary of State matters, are incredibly low. This is because you don’t know anything about the process, you have no expertise. You are going down there not knowing if your documents are in order, not knowing how to testify, not knowing what questions are going to be posed to you, not knowing how to prepare. If you were to have a hearing without an attorney, you will most likely be denied. However, if you go down with a highly competent attorney who specializes in Secretary of State matters, the chances of you getting at least some sort of driving privileges are extremely good.
Is It True That I’m Not Allowed To Have An Attorney At The Hearing?
You are absolutely allowed to have an attorney at the hearing. You are not obligated to have an attorney, and they don’t provide an attorney for you, but you are allowed to bring an attorney in to a Secretary of State hearing.
Isn’t It A Waste Of Time To Hire An Attorney For Such A Hearing?
For those who say hiring an attorney is a waste for these hearings, I would ask them how important is your driver’s license? If your driver’s license is not important to you, then I think an argument can be made that it’s not important to hire an attorney, because it’s just not that important to you to be able to legally drive. Most people who come into my office, in fact everybody who comes into my office, takes the divergent point of view that I need my license, whether its three months since my license was taken away, or 10 years. It’s not how long since my license was taken away. I need a license. I am living this penalty of not having a license every single day. I can’t take my daughter to a softball game, I can’t drive to work, I can’t go to church, I cannot go to the store to get milk, I cannot take my wife out to dinner.
If your license is revoked, the penalty of not having a license affects you every single day, except for people who live in the city, who have the supermarket across the street, and two blocks down is the movie theater and your workout facilities. If it’s four blocks away, you can take public transportation and you don’t need a license, but if you live in the suburbs and your license has been taken away, it’s essential that you have a driver’s license. It fundamentally changes the way you live on a day-to-day basis if you are going to follow the law. If you are not going to follow the law, and drive whether you have a license or not then, I guess it’s not terribly important, but you can’t complain if you get pulled over.
The general rule in Illinois is if you’ve got a license revoked for DUI, the first time you get pulled over, it’s a misdemeanor. The second time you are pulled over, and your license is revoked, the DUI turns into a felony. They need to have a heart to heart with themselves on how important their license is. Everybody that comes into my office has gotten to the point that they understand that a license is vitally important. Nobody wants to come into my office to spend big money, nobody wants to come into my office and spend any money. I understand that, and I feel the same way when I take my vehicle to the mechanic. If I could fix it, I would save that cost, but I don’t have the expertise. By the time people come into my office, they have dealt with the ramifications of not having a license, and they are highly motivated to do everything they can to try and rectify the situation.
For more information on Handling Driver’s License Reinstatement, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (847) 623-2424 today.
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