We are blessed to live here in Massachusetts. The state has so much to offer. No matter your interests, it is understandable that anyone would want to visit.
But, what if on your visit to Massachusetts or a different state, you find yourself facing charges while driving, like an OUI (operating under the influence) charge? Do you need a Massachusetts lawyer to deal with Massachusetts charges?
Do I need an attorney from the state where the alleged crime happened?
Generally, yes. In order to have a lawyer defend you in any criminal proceeding, they need to be able to practice law in that state.
If you face charges for a first, second or beyond OUI/DUI charge, you should seek representation from a Massachusetts barred attorney. OUI offenses vary based on the case specifics, including the number of times you have previously faced the same charge, whether someone was injured or whether minor children were present, among other factors.
What are my options?
If you face charges, remember you still are presumed innocent. But, if you visit from out of town and you face police in a state where you are unfamiliar with how things work, you may be tempted to talk to the police in hopes that speaking will help you get home sooner.
Do not fall into that trap. No matter where you are from, you can request to speak to a Massachusetts attorney before speaking to law enforcement, and you should.
Why would I benefit from contacting an attorney?
Attorneys can help discuss your options and possible defenses to any potential criminal charges. Any driver in Massachusetts can face serious consequences from probation, loss of license, fines, incarceration and more.
It is also a good idea to talk to an attorney before heading home because they can help you determine if it is possible to return home, or how best to handle any potential charges. If you visited a state, realize no matter where you are from, there are people in that state who want to help you assert your rights and help you.