Ask Your Questions: Fairfax Criminal Defense Attorneys Answer

The Taylor Law Company understands that if you are accused of a crime in Fairfax, you have all sorts of questions about your rights, about what you are up against, about what your future may look like. Take a look at our frequently asked questions, complete with informative answers, and see if they help; if they don’t, feel free to request a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our capable DUI/criminal defense lawyers.

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  • What happens if I do not pay my fines and costs to the court on time?

    If you fail to pay your fines and costs by the date the Judge orders then the clerk will relay the information to DMV.  DMV will suspend your license which  means you will not have a valid license.  To reinstate your license, you will have to pay off your fines and costs to the court in full and then pay a reinstatement fee to DMV.  If you have questions about this please call Taylor Law Company at 703 385 5529.

  • I cannot pay my fines and costs. Do I have any other options?

    Many counties throughout Virginia offer community service in lieu of paying the fines and costs when you cannot afford them.  If you know you cannot pay the fines and costs or that it will be a burden to you, community service may be your only option to help keep your finances in check.  Ask the Judge if he will allow community service to pay the fines and costs.

  • How can you apply the “why-what-how” model to your Virginia DUI defense?

    In a recent blog post, we talked about how Virginia DUI defendants often get overwhelmed and confused about their “best path” forward, even when they leverage the help of powerful and experienced legal representatives.

    One model for dealing with the chaos is known as the “why-what-how” model. In this paradigm, you spend time thinking through the “why” of your defense before you get into the nitty-gritty of the what and the how. The model makes intuitive sense: after all, if you don’t know the purpose of your activity, how can you know when that activity will be completed or how to go about achieving success? 

    On the other hand, we’re not really taught to make this model functional, so we tend to default to putting the “how” before the "why" or "what" because it’s just easier to do so.

    Drilling Down to Understand the Real “Why” Behind Your First “Why”

    Take a piece of paper or open a word-processing document, and write down in one sentence why you want to fight your Virginia DUI charges.

    For instance, you might write something along the lines of “because I don’t want to go to jail.” That’s great. Now take some time to ask yourself why you don’t want to go to jail. For instance, you might write something along the lines of “because I have a wife and kids to support.” You can ask then yourself why is it important for you to support your wife and kids. You might say “because I'm a family man, and I have a strong need to provide for the people I love.”

    Now that you have your “why,” you’re going to almost certainly find it easier to divine the “what” you need to accomplish. In other words, you now have standards for how to behave during your Virginia DUI defense. Your ultimate objective is to provide for your family, so all your decisions will be measured against that!

    Developing a clear vision for what success can also be somewhat difficult. To get that answer, don’t try to “do it all at once.” Instead, spend some time envisioning the “best case scenario”—that is, if everything went your way, what would that look like? What would that feel like? What would happen when? And so forth. Really spend time focusing not on the negative, but on the positive: what do you want to create in the real world?

    Going from the Why and What to the How

    Once you have understood your reason for trying to defend against the DUI and the vision for what you hope to accomplish, the next step is to figure out the how. The team here at the Taylor Law Co. can help you develop a strategic and sensible road forward. Connect with us today by calling 888-209-6631 for immediate assistance.

  • I was recently charged with a DUI in Fairfax County. I passed the field sobriety test, but I did not blow into a breathalyzer to confirm that I was driving while over the legal limit of 0.08 blood alcohol content. Despite the fact that I have not been found guilty of the charge, my license was still suspended for seven days. Why was my license taken away, if people are supposed to be considered innocent until proven guilty?

    Unfortunately, in this situation, there is not much you can do – if anything – to get your license back for the first seven days after a Fairfax County DUI arrest. It is law in the state of Virginia that a license be suspended for seven days in order to protect the public, regardless if you really were guilty or not guilty of driving under the influence.

    The Virginia DUI lawyers at the Taylor Law Company understand that this week-long inability to drive can wreak havoc on a career, especially one that is dependent on the employee transporting goods or people. That is why they urge anyone charged with a DUI to contact an attorney immediately so that the seven-day suspension does not turn in to a longer one after your court appearance. A number of defenses will and won’t work, depending on the individual situation. It is important to come up with a game plan as soon as possible to preserve your right to drive, as well as your driving record.

    For information on what game plans are available for fighting your Fairfax DUI charge, contact the lawyers at Taylor Law Company by calling toll-free, 888.209.6631 or by filling out our online form.

  • If I’ve been stopped for suspicion of DUI in Fairfax, do I have to take a Breathalyzer test?

    No, you do not have to submit to any field tests that a police officer requests of you when he or she stops you on suspicion of DUI in Northern Virginia. This right is stated clearly in the United States Constitution, and it says that you shall not be required to incriminate yourself. You simply say, “I do not consent to any tests except as required by the Implied Consent law.” This means you do not have to walk a straight line, follow a pen with your eyes, or recite the alphabet. However…

    If you are taken to the police station and arrested for DUI, and if the police ask to take the blood test or the breath test, you must do so or you could be charged with civil refusal. This charge carries with it an automatic one-year loss of license, with no restricted driving privileges.

    Your right to drive in the commonwealth of Virginia comes with a caveat: the Virginia implied consent law. This law states that as a condition of having the right to drive in Virginia, you implicitly agree to take a chemical test of your sobriety if the police have probable cause to believe that you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs when you were behind the wheel.

    If you have been charged with DUI or other traffic crime in Northern Virginia, immediately contact the experienced Fairfax DUI lawyers at Taylor Law Company. Call us at 703-385-5529 to set up a FREE, immediate, no-obligation consultation. We’ll make sure your rights are protected.

  • What do the points on my driving record mean?

    The best driving record you can have in Virginia is  +5.  For every year you receive no traffic violations you get +1 point.  Any time you get convicted of a traffic violation Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles will assess 3, 4, or 6 points depending on the charge you were convicted of in court.  The points only stay on your driving record for two years but the charge itself will remain on your driving record for 3, 5, or 11 years.    You can take a driver improvement course voluntarily and receive +5 points to help balance out any points assessed for the violation.  Keep in mind that the clerks office at the courthouse and the Judge do not assess the points.

  • My license was suspended in VA. I need to know if I am okay to drive outside of Virginia.

    If you have a Virginia driver's license and it gets suspended in Virginia, you are not allowed to drive anywhere until that suspension has been lifted and you have been reinstated by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.  The only exception would be if you have a restricted license.

  • If I have an out of state license and my privilege to drive in Virginia is suspended, can I still drive in other states?

    The answer to this question is that it depends.  Virginia has no authority to take your out of state license.  All Virginia can do is suspend your privilege to drive in Virginia and then transmit the information to the state where you are licensed.  You are free to drive everywhere but Virginia unless or until your home state takes action with your license.

  • My license was suspended in VA. Can I drive outside of Virginia?

    If you have a Virginia driver's license and it gets suspended in Virginia, you are not allowed to drive anywhere until that suspension has been lifted and you have been reinstated by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.  The only exception would be if you have a restricted license.

  • Do I need a lawyer for my reckless Driving case?

    It depends.  Some jurisdictions do not allow you to speak with a Commonwealth Attorney before appearing in front of the Judge so i would usually recommend having an attorney.  Other jurisdictions provide a chance for you to speak with a Commonwealth Attorney to try and resolve your case so you may not need an attorney in those places.  We do a free consult so give us a call and we can help you decide.