Why should I hire an attorney?
Our Attorneys see the courtroom. We spend the majority of our time before Judges, Prosecutors and Other Adversaries. We know what the law is and where to find it, and we know what questions to ask. We are fighters. Our clients are our most important asset.
Cases can be difficult, even a simple traffic ticket. Most people are not used to the confusion that the system presents, from the court’s own administration to the criminal/civil procedures involved in every case. As well, every case carries with it a variety of ancillary issues that you may not be ready for and may not know about.
What are the differences between pleas of “Guilty”, “No Contest”, and “Not Guilty”?
We must advise you that municipal courts and justices of the peace typically have court administration that is over-burdened and under-paid. Because of this, these courts typically do not spend the time to explain and distinguish each type of plea. This is a problem we see growing in our defense of the citizens of our State. You are not lawyers and should not be expected to know what the difference between each archaic term or what penalties are attached to each.
We will discuss each in lay-man’s terms:
“I plead Guilty/No Contest”: In a criminal proceeding, there is really no distinguishable difference between a plea of guilty or no contest. They carry the same weight of culpability. Guilty tells the court you did the offense. No contest tells the court that you aren’t saying you did or didn’t do the offense, but that you are willing to accept the responsibility for the offense. If you anticipate accepting responsibility, as a rule of thumb, plead no contest. When you accept a plea of guilty or no contest, the court WILL SENTENCE YOU. Your sentence could be a variety of things, but usually is a plea to a fine, probation, or deferred adjudication.
A plea to a FINE OR PROBATION always will be a final conviction on your record. YOU DO NOT WANT A FINAL CONVICTION ON YOUR RECORD.
A plea to DEFERRED ADJUDICATION will prevent a final conviction on your record (except for CDL holders). If you anticipate taking a plea, ALWAYS ASK FOR DEFERRED ADJUDICATION. THIS WILL PREVENT A FINAL CONVICTION (except for CDL holders).
“I plead Not Guilty”: In a criminal proceeding, not guilty tells the court that you wish to contest the allegations in the court’s charge. You are stating to the court that you are asserting your innocence to the Government’s charge and that you would like the Government to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Typically, the court will set you for a trial date, whereby the police officer, sheriff, constable or DPS officer who cited you, will be asked to appear for court. You will have a right to confront the witness and ask him questions related to your case. If the jury or judge finds in your favor, your case will be dismissed and jeopardy will attach. If you lose and you are found guilty of the offense, you can expect to be fined a substantial amount above the original ticket price.
CAUTION: If you ever have any doubt as to what plea to enter, consult an Attorney. Once you take a plea, a timer begins to run. You man only appeal a final conviction up to the tenth (10th) day after the judgment was entered by the court. After that, you may be stuck with a conviction on your record.
We are trained in the laws. We are Attorneys of Texas. Let us fight for you.
Should I take Defensive Driving?
Our answer to you would be: IT DEPENDS.
Defensive Driving is a method by which many persons who are eligible may be able to keep a traffic citation from becoming a conviction on their record. It typically requires the offender to plead to a citation, pay court costs and fines related to that offense, purchase and enroll in a driver safety course, achieve and purchase a driver safety course certificate, obtain and purchase a driving record from DPS, and then forward all documents and payments to the court.
So...should I do it? If you have the time, money, patience, organization, and you qualify for a Driver Safety Course, it may be the right fit for you.
So...why should I NOT do it? Beyond the expenses, you will have to go to court on your own. This can sometimes take hours or multiple court appearances over several months, normally a minimum of ninety (90) days. As well, the driver safety course takes time, at bare minimum four (4) to six (6) hours. And if the court does not receive all of the previously mentioned items in the paragraphs above, they can STILL CONVICT you as violating the terms of your agreement. Many times, hiring an Attorney will save you peace of mind and time. Our ticket fighters keep these two principles at the forefront of our legal representation.
We fight your ticket in Bexar and the surrounding counties, including the following cities and courts:
Our Attorneys are located downtown in San Antonio, Texas and provide legal representation and solutions in the following:
- Alamo Heights
- Balcones Heights
- Bexar County Justice of the Peace 1, Place 1
- Bexar County Justice of the Peace 1, Place 3
- Bexar County Justice of the Peace 2
- Bexar County Justice of the Peace 3
- Bexar County Justice of the Peace 4
- Castle Hills
- China Grove
- Fair Oaks Ranch
- Grey Forest
- Hill Country Village
- Family Law
- Divorce & Annulments
- Suits Affecting Parent Child Relationships
- Child Support Contempt
- Child Support Modification
- Attorney General Cases
- Personal Injury
- Soft Tissue
- Car Accidents
- Trials & Settlements
- Contractual Agreements
- Business Formation
- Breaches of Contract
- Criminal Law
- Misdemeanors (including DWI)
- Pleas & Trials
- Motions to Revoke Probation
- Motions to Enter Adjudication of Guilt
- Parole Hearings
- Parole Violation Hearings
- Estate Planning
- Probate Administration
- Guardianship of the Person & Estate
- Wealth Law
- Will Contests
- Family Limited Partnerships