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Steps to Take After Being Charged with a DWI in Missouri

Steps to Take After Being Charged with a DWI in Missouri

Being charged with a DWI in Missouri can be confusing and overwhelming, but it’s important to take immediate action to protect your rights and minimize the potential impact on your future. The St. Louis DWI lawyers at Bruntrager & Billings will walk you through the entire process step by step.


Step 1: Hire a DWI Attorney in Missouri

A DWI attorney will have a deep understanding of the laws and regulations specific to Missouri and will be able to assess the specific circumstances of your case. They will be your advocate throughout the legal process, ensuring that your rights are protected and that you receive fair treatment under the law. 


Step 2: Understand the Consequences

In Missouri, DWI offenses are categorized into different levels based on factors such as blood alcohol concentration (BAC) and previous convictions. The penalties for a DWI conviction can include fines, license suspension, mandatory alcohol education programs, community service, probation, and even jail time. Additionally, a DWI conviction can have long-lasting impacts on your personal and professional life, including increased insurance rates, difficulty securing employment, and damage to your reputation.


Step 3: Gather Evidence

To build a strong defense against a Missouri DWI charge, it’s important to gather as much evidence as possible. This can include police reports, breathalyzer and blood test results, witness statements, video footage, and any other relevant documentation. Your St. Louis DWI attorney at Bruntrager & Billings will assist you in obtaining and analyzing this evidence to identify any inconsistencies, procedural errors, or constitutional violations that can be used to strengthen your defense.


Step 4: Craft a Defense Strategy

Some common defenses in DWI cases include challenging the validity of the traffic stop, questioning the accuracy of breathalyzer or blood test results, disputing the chain of custody of evidence, or demonstrating irregularities in the field sobriety tests. Your DWI lawyer will carefully examine the facts of your case and determine which defenses are most appropriate to pursue.


Step 5: Explore Plea Options and Alternative Sentencing

In some cases, it may be beneficial to explore plea options or alternative sentencing programs that can mitigate the potential consequences of a DWI conviction. Your DWI attorney will assess the strength of your defense, negotiate with the prosecution, and advocate for the best possible outcome on your behalf.

Alternative sentencing programs may include diversion programs, probation, substance abuse treatment, or community service. Your attorney will explore all available options and recommend the most suitable path based on the specific circumstances of your case.


Step 6: Protect Your Driving Privileges

One of the most immediate concerns after a DWI charge is protecting your driving privileges. In Missouri, a DWI charge can lead to the suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. Your DWI lawyer will assist you in navigating the administrative process of the Department of Revenue, representing you at the license suspension hearing, and advocating for the reinstatement of your driving privileges.


Need a DWI Lawyer in Missouri?

By hiring a skilled DWI attorney in Missouri, understanding the potential consequences, gathering evidence, assessing potential defenses, and navigating the legal process, you can significantly improve your chances of achieving a favorable outcome. To book a free legal consultation or case review with one of our skilled St. Louis DWI lawyers, contact us now.