Question: How long does a criminal DUI or DWI case take?

Benson Varghese: A DUI case is a class A misdemeanor citation. Those can be resolved fairly quickly and there isn’t a lot of paperwork that goes into it. Very often, it’s a citation issued by a police officer. The officer will show up to court, if they’re subpoenaed, and very basically establish why they believe you had a detectable amount of alcohol in your system. It’s a very quick process. A driving while intoxicated charge is a class B misdemeanor at the very lowest level.

Criminal cases typically are frustratingly slow in how they move through the court system. Many misdemeanor offenses take a year to be resolved; part of that is because of how the evidence gets to the prosecutor, is reviewed by the prosecutor, and works its way through the criminal system.

Many attorneys ask their clients to be proactive and they themselves are proactive. It’s not uncommon for a client of mine to have a case resolved in a couple of months, and the reason is that for a prosecutor or someone who’s been doing this for a while, you know exactly what can be done on the case, you gather the evidence quickly, and you ask your clients to start doing things that will result in a positive resolution to the situation. And in the criminal system, in many cases, being proactive will get you a better deal than you might otherwise get.