It is surprising to hear that many people do not show up to their DUI court hearings with a lawyer. If you do get a lawyer, do not do some of the stupid things others have done when facing a DUI charge. Here are some examples of the less-than-intelligent things others have done and why you should avoid them.
DO NOT Show Up to Court Buzzed, Drunk or Falling Over Drunk
You would be surprised at the number of people who secure a lawyer for a DUI case, and then show up to court under the influence assuming that the presence of a lawyer will free them of the charges against them. Having a DUI lawyer can help get the DUI charge reduced or dropped, but it does not mean absolute protection against criminal charges if you fail to appear sober in court. The more obviously drunk you are, the less effective your lawyer will be because you did not make an effort to appear sober.
Do Not Show Up to Court Looking Like You Spent the Night in a Dumpster
If you appear in court sober, but unwashed and a total mess, the judge may assume you spent the previous night partying and could not get up for court on time. If you do not have clean, suitable attire, ask your lawyer about other appropriate clothing that you can wear (so long as it is clean). In the event that you are actually homeless and living in your car (and that is how you got a DUI), ask your lawyer for advice. When you tell him/her about the circumstances surrounding your DUI and the fact that you live in your car, he/she may be able to use that in court to show that you are indigent and were forced to move your vehicle (i.e., your current "home") after consuming alcoholic beverages.
Do Not Consume Tranquilizers, Sedatives or Muscle Relaxants before Coming to Court
Sure, court is a very nerve-racking situation. You may be tempted to take prescription tranquilizers, sedatives, or muscle relaxants to calm your nerves--do not do that. These medications can make you appear drunk by slurring your speech and causing your body to move in ways that mimic a drunk person or someone who has taken a lot of pills to get high. Find another way to calm yourself and request that you be allowed to use this non-disruptive calming method in court.