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The North Miami police department has announced a DUI checkpoint to begin on Friday, January 30, 2009. The DUI checkpoint will begin at 7 p.m. on Friday and will be in operation until approximately 4:00 a.m. on Saturday. The DUI checkpoint will be located at 1400 NW 135th Street.

The city of North Miami recently received approximately $60,000 from the Florida Department of Transportation. The sole purpose for the funds is for the City of North Miami to hold DUI checkpoints once per month during 2009.

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As a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer in Broward County and former prosecutor, I’ve seen it all when it comes to criminal cases being prosecuted. One of the most common questions we get from prospective clients (especially the younger ones) is “do I need a lawyer?”

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My answer has consistently been “yes.” It’s not based on what I do for a living. The bottom line is that any time an individual is charged with a criminal offense they should always be represented by a skilled and experienced Florida criminal defense lawyer. Anything you can do to protect and preserve your reputation will help you distinguish yourself and enable you to be the best candidate for employment, school admissions or even a quick check by the neighborhood “snoop.”

So, what are some of the advantages of being represented by an experienced Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer?

A lawyer’s legal knowledge and experience may favorably affect jail or pre-trial release possibilities; may result in obtaining information about the case through skillful use of discovery devices; may uncover potential violations of constitutional rights and take measures to address them; may ensure compliance with speedy trial and statute of limitations provisions; and may identify and secure favorable evidence to be introduced at trial on your behalf.

At trial a lawyer can call witnesses for you, question witnesses against you and present evidence on your behalf. A lawyer can advise you on whether you should testify, the consequences of that decision, and what you have a right not to say.
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The first ten ( 10 ) days after arrest for a DUI in Florida are viewed by most experienced Florida DUI lawyers as one of the most important aspects of your case. The State will try and take your license away for either blowing over the legal limit ( .08 ) or if you refuse to take a breath test. This has to be challenged within the first ten days or else it is forever waived and you will lose your license for the proscribed period. This procedure is commonly referred to as the “Ten Day Rule” for Florida DUI’s.

Florida DUI 10 Day Rule

Making a timely challenge will keep you driving on the road for at least another 4-6 weeks and gives you a chance to prevent the suspension all together.
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Florida’s Move Over Law requires motorists to move over when a patrol car, emergency vehicle, or tow truck/wrecker is stopped on the side of the road with lights flashing. Driver’s in Florida are required to approach emergency vehicles with caution, change lanes away from emergency vehicles if able to move over safely, or slow down while maintaining a safe speed.

Florida move over law

In light of recent crashes involving law enforcement conducting traffic enforcement, the State of Florida enacted legislation in an effort to reduce the risk for law enforcement and emergency personnel.

Broward County and Palm Beach County law enforcement are writing a significant number of traffic tickets for alleged violations of the Florida Move Over Law. Traffic stops have spiked in South Florida because of this law. As a criminal defense lawyer in Florida for over fourteen years, I have seen the routine traffic stop turn into more serious situations like DUI investigations, arrests for illegal drugs and weapons violations. In addition a personality conflicts between a driver and an officer can escalate into a more serious situation when an officer decides there is a need for retaliation for a “bad attitude.”

Be aware of this law. Police officers are constantly looking for reasons to pull you over. You can limit your risk of being stopped by being aware of this law.

Personally, I feel attempted compliance by a driver actually increases the risk of an accident. If traffic is heavy or conditions are unsafe, I recommend at least activating a turn signal so at least your intentions can be clearly seen by law enforcement.
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Broward County probation officers supervising felony offenders will have eight less officers on their staff as a result of Florida budget cuts. Reporter Sofa Santana with the Sun-Sentinel reports that probation officers in Broward County face a 10% increase in their case loads with an average of 93 offenders assigned to each probation officer.

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An individual being supervised in Broward County can face a violation of probation for a new arrest, non-compliance with the actual sentencing requirements or a failed drug test. A judge will typically issue a violation of probation warrant which subjects an individual to be re-sentenced up to the maximum penalty for the original offense.
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Checking the status of your Florida driver’s license is a relatively simple procedure according to the Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyers at Leifert & Leifert. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles allows anyone with a Florida driver’s license to quickly check the status of their license. All you need is your Florida driver’s license number.

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Click here to check the status of your FLORIDA DRIVER’S LICENSE

Our Florida Criminal Defense Lawyers have represented numerous clients who have had problems with their drivers licenses who simply were not aware of the problem due lack of notice. The best way to protect yourself from driving with a bad license is to make sure the Florida DMV has your correct address. By law, a Florida driver is required to change their address on their Florida license to reflect their correct residence. The Florida DMV only issues notification of suspensions or problems by mail.

The Florida DMV also allows on line renewal your driver’s license and the ability to request Florida identification cards.
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Florida Traffic Ticket fines are scheduled to increase on February 1, 2009. In an effort to generate revenue for the State of Florida, Legislators have increased numerous Florida traffic ticket penalties and expect to raise $16 million in 2009.

Fines on speeding tickets are scheduled to increase $10.00 – $35.00 depending on the alleged speed. Fine on other traffic tickets for moving violations are also scheduled to increase. Florida traffic citations for failure to yield, failure to maintain a single lane, not using a turn signal or running a red light will also increase.

The State of Florida has also eliminated the eighteen percent (18%) discount for individuals who are eligible and elect to attend traffic school.

Broward County law enforcement issued a total of 530,052 traffic tickets in 2006.
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