Common drunk driving questions

Common Drunk Driving Questions

What is the difference between an OWI and a DUI?

There is no difference between an OWI and a DUI. They are both acronyms for a drunk driving charge. In Wisconsin, we refer to a drunk driving charge as an OWI, or operating while intoxicated. DUI stands for driving under the influence. You may have heard drunk driving charges referred to as DWIs, or driving while intoxicated. Throughout our website we frequently interchange OWI and DUI when referring to a drunk driving charge.

What is the OWI process and what is expected of me as the defendant?

This is one of many common drunk driving questions. For the most part OWI defense plays out in the same process for a majority of cases. But it does vary depending on whether you are charged with an OWI 1st, 2nd, or 3rd +. Additionally, the process and what you as the defendant need to do varies on what court you are in, i.e. municipal court or circuit court, and who is prosecuting your charge, i.e. the city, county, or state. One of our focuses at Anderson & O’Connell, SC is to keep you informed of what you need to do and how you can help the defense of your case. When you know what to expect as your case progresses, your stress level will be reduced significantly will.

As a DUI Attorney what is one of the first things you will do for me?

At Anderson & O’Connell, SC we start by requesting an administrative review hearing. This hearing is available if you provided a sample of your breath or blood, you have a prohibited alcohol concentration or restricted controlled substance in your blood, and you request the hearing within 10 days. If we win the hearing you will keep your license until the end of your case. However, holding this hearing gives us an opportunity to review your case before we ever go to court. That can open the door to potential OWI defenses that we would otherwise not have known about.

What happens at my first court appearance in an OWI case?

The first court appearance for an OWI case is where we enter not guilty pleas. As your case progresses we will request discovery and file open records request with the arresting agency. If any videos are available we will get them.  Depending on the specific facts of your case we will either be preparing for trial or working on mitigating any potential penalty. Contact us today to find the specific process your OWI charge will follow.

What are the potential outcomes of my DUI case?

If you are convicted of a drunk driving charge you will face a wide range of penalties. Those penalties will depend on the facts of your case and how they relate to the OWI sentencing guidelines. You may feel that your OWI case could only end with a dismissal of all charges or being convicted of all charges. That is not necessarily true. Often plea deals are reached where some of the charges are dismissed in exchange for a plea to another charge. Some cases may be settled with an amended charge that does not result in an OWI conviction. A good attorney will be straight with you when discussing the potential outcomes of your case. It can be frustrating when expectations are not met, or are unobtainable. We will be straight forward with you when discussing the potential outcomes of your case. We will be straight forward with the problems we see in your case or if we believe your case should go to trial. Although we won’t sugar coat the potential penalties, we will aggressively fight your OWI charge. We can’t  guarantee the outcome, but we can guarantee that every possible defense will be explored. If you have additional drunk driving questions do not hesitate to contact our office.

Will my OWI case go to trial?

First and foremost, if your case needs to go to trial, we will take it to trial. However, most drunk driving cases do not go to trial.  This is because many issues with an OWI case are litigated prior to trial either through a motion hearing or between the defense and prosecution. In other cases the prosecutor offers an acceptable plea bargain. A small percentage of drunk driving cases actually go to jury trial. It is important to know whether your attorney is willing to take your case all the way. We are dedicated to doing everything it takes to get the results you expect, including taking your drunk driving case to trial.