Many criminal defense and traffic ticket lawyers in Ohio’s capital city promise to help clients with DUI cases. The wide array of choice is good because anyone charged with the crime that state laws call operating a vehicle while intoxicated, or OVI, is well-advised to hire a defense lawyer. The penalties for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol just one time start with a mandatory jail sentence or house arrest and a lengthy license suspension that restricts the person’s own personal license and completely revokes his or her commercial driver’s license.

No one can hire just any Columbus DUI lawyer and expect to have his or her charges reduced or dismissed, however. Choosing the first law firm that comes up in a web search will not suffice. A drunk or drugged driving suspect should look for four signs that a defense lawyer will take his or her case seriously and work hard to achieve the best result.


Google, Bing, or Yahoo are fine places to start looking for a defense lawyer. Even if you requested a public defender for your arraignment, if you pleaded not guilty during that first appearance before a judge, you can hire your own attorney and replace the court-appointed defender.  I suggest requesting a continuance though, so no procedural matters are missed.

Just type “Columbus DUI lawyer” into your preferred search engine, go to the websites that come up, and start researching. Do this even if a friend or family member recommends a defense lawyer. What worked for that person may not be best for you.

The first thing you want to look for is an attorney’s experience with helping people like you. Click on case results, read relevant articles, and check out a blog post or two.

Each case presents its own facts and challenges, but underage DUI cases also share similarities. Likewise, charges for second- or third-offense DUI are more similar to each other than they are to first-time physical control cases. Consequently, the defense strategies a Columbus DUI attorney used successfully for a client with a case like yours can also be used in an attempt to secure you a reduced sentence or an acquittal.


You must have a lawyer who picks up the phone and answers emails.

While no high-quality, in-demand Columbus DUI attorney can always drop everything at a moment’s notice, you should never wait more than a day for a reply. You should expect availability on weekends and after 5 pm. Most of all, you should demand full, factual, and honest answers.

Just as you can replace a public defender with a defense lawyer you hired, you can fire an attorney who ignores you or fails to deal with you in an upfront manner.


Walk away from a DUI attorney who guarantees you a full acquittal. Prosecutors and judges take drunk and drugged driving cases very seriously. You need a defense lawyer who will do everything to prove that charges were made in error, but the judge’s ruling cannot be predicted with absolute certainty.


During your first conversation with your potential DUI defense attorney, ask about costs and payment options.

Most lawyers who represent people facing OVI charges offer free consultations. When they sign up a client, they may ask for a flat fee or charge by the hour. Some may quote a basic rate but charge for services ranging from retesting blood and urine samples to making copies.

Make sure you know what you may expect to pay before you sign a contract with a Columbus DUI attorney. If the estimate sounds outside of your budget, ask about payment plans. Get free consultation from Columbus criminal defense lawyer.

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