In the first part of our series How to Find a DUI Lawyer in Pennsylvania, we discussed what “DUI Lawyer” really means. We came to the conclusion that what we mean by DUI Lawyer is a Lawyer who specializes in handling DUI cases.
To further aid the average citizen in identifying who qualifies as a specialized and skilled advocate in DUI, we propose a simple five question survey you should ask any lawyer you are considering retaining for a DUI case.
Question #1: What specialized DUI training have you attended over the past year?
We have discussed the importance of DUI training before and have opted to discuss it here once again to highlight the importance of ongoing legal education in the field of DUI. There are many highly complex forensic, medical, statutory, procedural, and technical issues involved in DUI cases. Because of the complexity of these cases, there are a number of specialized seminars which are attended by attorneys specializing in DUI from all across the country.
These specialized DUI courses are the key to winning DUI cases. This in-depth knowledge allows DUI lawyers to challenge evidence in the case and secure a favorable verdict. A lawyer who spends his/her time in attending advanced DUI training, shows a higher level of devotion and commitment to the clients they represent. In that same vein, here are the details of the specialized DUI seminars I have already attended this year:
• January-Attended the National College for DUI Defense Winter Session (16 hours of training)
• March-Hosted Industrial Training and Design, Ltd’s seminar “2009 Advanced Issues in Alcohol Testing Seminar” (16 hours of training)
• May-Attended the Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney’s Association seminar “6th Annual Advanced DUI Seminar”Everything You need to Know About Medical Defenses and Blood Tests’” (8 hours of training)
• May-Attended and instructed at NCDD/GACDL/Headlines Marketing’s “Advanced Forensic Blood and Urine Seminar” in San Diego, CA (42 hours of training); [it covered topics including: Forensic Metrology; the proper setup and operation of a forensic lab; hospital blood testing; legal blood alcohol testing; venipuncture; urinalysis testing; crime lab errors; hospital lab errors; hospital blood analysis for ETOH and drugs; ELISA, FPIA, CEDIA, KIMS, RIA, EMIT, Vacu-Elute, Headspace Gas Chromatography, Liquid Gas Chromatography, Thin-layer Chromatography, GC-FTIR, Mass Spectrometry, Photo-eclectic analysis; pre-collection errors; collection errors; analysis errors; chain of custody, storage, transportation and delivery related issues; phramacokinetics; pharmacodynamics; solid dose sample drug analysis; postmortem analysis; endogenous versus exogenous alcohol production; intake, absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion (elimination) of alcohol and drugs; medical conditions that mimic intoxication; health factors and medications that increase expected BAC levels; Widmark Calculations using the Forrest Modification; scientific issues in alcohol testing in blood and other body fluids for forensic purposes; deciphering medical terminology; managing the treatment and emergency records; forensic testing issues for contraband plant material or “designer” drugs; pharmacological aspects of drugs other than alcohol; elimination kinetics (half lives, Michaelis-Menten kinetics); DNA evidence and various analytical laboratory issues]
• June-Attended the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration approved seminar “Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE)” (16 hours of training) and was the first criminal defense attorney ever to achieve this certification
• June-Hosted and co-instructed at the Impaired Driving Specialist’s seminar “Advanced Drug Recognition Expert (DRE)” (40 hours of training)
• July-Attended the NCDD Summer Session at Harvard Law School-Cambridge, MA (16 hours of training)
By the end of the year, I will have attended over 214 hours worth of specialized training all in an effort to offer the best possible advice to the citizen accused.
It is your best interest to have a highly trained attorney working for you. So next time you are in search of a DUI Lawyer, ask about their training qualifications and see if they are a true DUI specialist.