DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE - DUI PALM BEACH GARDENS

Nationally Recognized •  Trial Experience • Trained Police Officers •  Trained Prodecutors •  Litigated Breath and Blood Issues

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Elizabeth Parker, Partner at Kaplan & Parker LLP, trained hundreds of prosecutors and police officers how to properly investigate and prosecute DUI cases in Palm Beach Gardens and South Florida.  Ms. Parker lectured, taught seminars, rode along with officers, supervised DUI saturation patrols, taught officers what they can (and can’t) do when arresting a driver for DUI, what they should (and shouldn’t) write in their police reports, and what they must (and must not) say when they testify in court.  Ms. Parker was responsible for the supervision of prosecution of thousands of individuals charged with alcohol or drug related driving offenses, which has provided her with a unique perspective and experience in now representing those individual charged with DUI related offenses. Ms. Parker’s extraordinary experience enables her to masterfully identify the strengths and weaknesses of the prosecutor’s case, including significant evidentiary issues that can be litigated pre-trial which may lead to charges being reduced or dismissed.

dui attorney palm beach gardensElizabeth Parker knows Palm Beach DUI cases.  Ms. Parker was the Supervisor of the DUI division at the Palm Beach State Attorney’s Office from 2003 to 2011.  Ms. Parker hired, trained and/or supervised many of the Assistant State Attorneys currently employed in the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s Office.  Ms. Parker was in charge of the training for all of the prosecutors at the Palm Beach County State Attorney’s Office from 2009-2011.  Ms. Parker knows exactly what your DUI prosecutor will do in court.  Ms. Parker knows their strengths and weaknesses because she used to train and supervise them.  Ms. Parker has trained officers for every law enforcement agency in Palm Beach County (including: Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Highway Patrol, West Palm PD, Palm Beach Gardens PD, Jupiter PD, Greenacres PD, Boca Raton PD, Delray Beach PD), on DUI investigation, report writing and courtroom testimony.  Ms. Parker also lectured to law enforcement officers from around the State on drawing blood in DUI investigations.  Ms. Parker prosecuted numerous DUI Manslaughter and Traffic Homicide cases during her career as a prosecutor.  Ms. Parker successfully defended the use of the breath instrument (Intoxilyzer) against three separate attacks in 2005, 2007, and 2010 by the Defense Bar.  These lengthy hearings were held in front of a panel of judges and the results were relied upon throughout the State of Florida.

Ms. Parker was instrumental in obtaining the first blood warrant in a DUI case for refusal to take a breath test in Palm Beach County and lead the first “No Refusal” weekend in Palm Beach County.  Ms. Parker was given the Distinguished Service Award for Prosecution from the Traffic Safety Council of the Palm Beach and in 2005 was recognized by Mothers Against Drunk Driving as the Outstanding DUI Prosecutor for the State of Florida.

As a criminal defense attorney, Elizabeth Parker has taken her extensive knowledge of DUI investigation and prosecution and has obtained outstanding results for clients.  In 2014 Ms. Parker challenged the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in Tallahassee, alleging that the rules in place in the State of Florida that govern blood collection are scientifically unreliable.  This issue was litigated before an Administrative Law Judge in the State v. John Goodman case.  Ms. Parker has worked with experts to research and litigate issues relating to blood collection, preservation and scientific testing in DUI cases.  Ms. Parker has extensive experience in complex scientific areas such as anatomy, biology, chemistry, physiology and toxicology as well as field sobriety testing.  Ms. Parker understands how the breath testing instruments, the hospital testing instruments and the forensic laboratories instruments that are used to test for breath, blood and urine.

 The Importance of Hiring a Skilled, Knowledgeable
and Experienced DUI Attorney

When you are arrested for DUI, the police officer will confiscate your driver’s license and give you a “notice of suspension” that will serve as a temporary license. You must contact the Department of Motor Vehicles within 10 calendar days of your arrest in order to challenge the suspension of your driver’s license – or it will be suspended (up to 90 days for a first offense) regardless of the outcome of your criminal case.

The DMV hearing and your criminal case are two separate parts to your DUI charges. Hiring a lawyer that can fight to keep your driving privileges is important.  Additionally, you will be facing criminal charges in court. This means that you may face imprisonment as well as heavy fines, a driver’s license suspension, community service, DUI School and drug and alcohol treatment/counseling, an immobilization of your vehicle, and an ignition interlock.

In some instances when this is your first DUI arrest, the DMV will offer you the opportunity to avoid a suspension and you can obtain a business purpose license after enrolling in DUI school.

This is a legal process, and law enforcement and the prosecution will be working hard to try to secure a conviction against you. You need an aggressive DUI lawyer on your side, standing in the way of a potential conviction, harsh DUI penalties, a criminal record, and a limited future.

When you have been arrested for DUI in Florida – you need a lawyer who knows Florida DUI law inside and out- but more importantly, a lawyer who can protect your rights, make sure you are treated fairly and who knows how to get results.

Your DUI Attorney Should Have Extensive Courtroom Experience

DUI cases differ in many respects from other criminal charges – a DUI arrest is an accusation that largely rests on the opinion of a police officer.  Police officers are given much power when it comes to these arrest decisions and a DUI arrest can alter a person’s life.  DUI cases are especially complex because they require an attorney to understand scientific, as well as legal processes.  The legal issues that are involved in DUI cases are search and seizure, due process, illegal interrogation, denial of counsel, and complex evidentiary issues.  It is important that you hire an attorney with scientific areas of expertise, such as anatomy, biology, chemistry, physiology and toxicology as well as field sobriety testing.  An experienced DUI attorney must also understand how the breath test equipment, the hospital testing equipment and the forensic laboratories instrument all test for breath, blood and urine.

Just like selecting the right doctor for a serious medical procedure, you don’t want to hire just anyone.  You want a dedicated professional, someone with the DUI-specific qualifications and courtroom experience needed to stand up for you and defend you in court.  You need an experienced DUI defense attorney.  When your case goes to court, you need an attorney with extensive DUI knowledge to defend you.  You want the attorney cross-examining your police officer about the deficiencies in his reports and errors in his investigation to have the confidence that can only come from extensive courtroom experience.  You want the attorney defending you to have comprehensive knowledge about the breath testing machine, and how it does (and doesn’t) work.

Not every DUI case will go to trial, but if you decide to fight your case, you need attorneys who know how to win in the courtroom.  When you hire our firm, you’ll be hiring trial lawyers with more than 40 years of investigative experience and over 50 years of courtroom participation and experience.

Your DUI Attorney Should Have Knowledge
About the Civil Claims You Could Be Facing

Denial of Coverage  

Automobile insurance covers negligence and perhaps even gross negligence or reckless conduct, depending on the language in the policy.  An auto insurance policy does not cover intentional conduct and some automobile insurers will deny coverage – stating that drinking and driving is intentional conduct (the driver intentionally put him or herself in a position to cause the accident -- i.e., the driver intentionally drank alcohol, intentionally got drunk, intentionally drove after getting drunk, and knew or should have known that drinking and driving is extremely dangerous) and they refuse to cover the damages resulting from a DUI crash or accident.   

If you cause an accident while you are intoxicated, your auto insurer will at least need to investigate the circumstances of the accident.  If the insurer refuses to defend you and denies coverage for the damages relating to the accident – you will need to have an attorney try to force coverage for the accident. 

It is important that you have a DUI Attorney that has experience working with insurance companies and understands that the DUI may be much more complex than just an arrest and criminal charge.  It is crucial to protect any of your personal assets and you must be vigilant to protect your rights during the investigation of the claim by the insurance company and during the defense of the claim. 

Limitation of Coverage

Even if your insurer agrees to defend you for damages relating to your accident, it will still not defend you against a claim of intentional misconduct or pay for damages relating to a charge of intentional misconduct or gross negligence. 

A plaintiff can make a claim for punitive damages in Florida, if they can show that the defendant had actual knowledge of the wrongfulness of the conduct and the high probability that injury or damage to the claimant would result and, despite that knowledge, intentionally pursued that course of conduct, resulting in injury or damage or if the conduct was so reckless or wanting in care that it constituted a conscious disregard or indifference to the life, safety, or rights of persons exposed to such conduct.

If a lawyer is suing you for damages and injury relating to a DUI Accident or Crash, and they add a claim for intentional misconduct or gross negligence a jury could award the plaintiff damages and the insurance company will not pay for those damages. You will have to pay for intentional misconduct damages out of your own pocket.

It is important that you have a DUI Attorney that understands how insurance companies operate.  You need a DUI attorney that can defend your DUI charge and can work to limit your exposure in any civil suit.  It is important that your DUI attorney understands the impact that a DUI conviction could have on you in every aspect.

 



March 9th, 2016

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Here at Kaplan & Parker LLP, we believe that everyone should be able to have legal representation of their own choosing.

Contact us today at (561) 296-7900 for a FREE consultation and to learn more about how we can help you. We are available 24/7.

 


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