As a precaution, plan to make bail if you go out tonight, and take cash for possible DUI bail in the amount of $300 or more. This should be a sufficient amount to pay any required bonding fee for a drunken driving charge, typically, 10% to 15% of the total bond amount if you need a commercial bonding company. If you have any prior criminal record or you are facing a felony DUI charge, your bond amount may not be a fixed amount, nor be subject to being calculated from a printed “schedule.”
You may be stuck in jail until a judge looks at your prior criminal and driving history, and sets an appropriate bond. Also take a credit card and a debit card. You may be forced to use one or both to pay for bond fees or an independent blood test, if such a test is available in your state. In some jurisdictions, you may be allowed to stop by an ATM machine to obtain needed cash for bail. Some jails will allow use of a debit card to let you bond out of jail, but not a credit card (due to higher bank fees on credit cards).
Write Down and Keep Important Phone Numbers
When you are arrested for DUI-DWI, your cell phone will be taken away from you, so you won’t have access to your phone contact list. Most people don’t memorize all of their family members’ phone numbers, and you may have to call a few people until you find one that can bail you out of jail. At a minimum write down your spouse’s number, your parents, your brother or sister, your friends, and your go-to DUI attorney. Many jails only allow “collect” calls to be made, and cell phones cannot take collect calls. So, write down landline or home phone numbers too.
In most states your DUI lawyer cannot bail you out of jail, but he or she will contact a friend or family member to let them know where you are and what happened. In turn they can let your employer know if you want them to divulge your DUI arrest, or at least tell your employer you will not be at work. Jails are not set up to make it easy and convenient for you to contact the outside world.
In jail you will be lucky to get even one phone call, and typically you will be sharing one phone with lots of other inmates who are just as desperate as you to get out. Arranging for a bail bondsman takes time, so you just have to be patient as your family or friends arrange to free you from jail.
While you are in jail be respectful to officers and fellow inmates. DO NOT get into any more trouble while there. Remain silent as much as you can. Do not discuss details of your DUI arrest. Anything you say, even in passing, can decrease your chances at a successful DUI case outcome. Call us at 1-888-839-4384 if you are arrested for drunk driving and need a top-notch DUI attorney to appear for you at your DUI arraignment.