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  • David A. Cmelik Law PLC

Looking for the best DUI lawyer: let's talk

justice, fairness, and due process are our objectives

Lawyers specialize now and have been for a long time. While the State of Iowa licenses only “lawyers,” with no special certifications for individual practice area, there is a wide variety and depth of knowledge, specialization, and experience among the bar.

It is the opinion of David A. Cmelik Law PLC that someone charged with Operating While Intoxicated, or, OWI, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, or other Iowa community, should choose an attorney limited exclusively to criminal law. To start the process, it is not uncommon for OWI defendants to search for the best DUI lawyer online.

When doing so, they should look beyond local search engine results, advertising, and for-profit aggregators and go directly to the “source”—an OWI attorney’s website. We here urge potential clients to seek an attorney that practices criminal law exclusively. Why? Well, if an attorney keeps the lights on by practicing in another area of the law, they will divide their practice among several areas. They will be an OWI or criminal lawyer at most fifty percent of the time if they have even one additional practice area-- maybe less if they purport to specialize in another area. By definition a general practice law firm will divide their attention among many different practice areas and cannot, as some questionable advertising has suggested, “specialize” in all of them. It’s a contradiction. I've never heard of something called a "general OWI lawyer" but I had to chuckle when I saw one advertised the other day. Buyer beware.

Second, we’re partial here to solo practitioners. Why? Law firms are by definition a top down affair. The most experienced, most senior lawyers in a firm occupied with multiple attorneys and associate lawyers will be reserved for the highest paying clients and most serious cases. To make a law firm with multiple attorneys pay, managing partners have to insist that lower paid, less experienced associates handle matters they consider relatively more minor than their biggest clients. That means misdemeanor DUI matters may be passed on to associates to give them the experience they need to become more senior. They will also need to handle many of these matters simultaneously to justify their compensation in a so called "eat what you kill" environment where new lawyers must "make rain" to survive. What does that mean? A law firm that has multiple associates, paralegals, and receptionists will need to take on more cases and assign them on the basis of severity and penalty to lower paid, less experienced associates and save the bigger cases for the name you recognize on the building. There’s nothing untoward about this; it’s how law firms must function if they are not solo shops. It’s just business.

But the individual client can become a mere cog in a large operation. While your OWI or criminal law matter is the most important thing in your life, it becomes a smaller part of the revenue stream in a larger operation. We don't practice law that way. We're a solo outfit. You matter.

That's because we here at David A. Cmelik Law PLC don’t think of clients as “just business.” We will never assign your case to a less experienced associate to try to earn off their inexperience and learning curve. The namesake of the firm will handle the case from start to finish. He and his significant criminal law experience will be available to you when you need it. We practice 100% OWI (DUI) and criminal law, of which DUI is a significant subset. After more than 4,250 cases and nearly 17 years of experience, your attorney, should you choose this firm, is far from a rookie.

Third, there's a reason the namesake of the firm practices only DUI (OWI) and criminal law: you. The satisfaction we derive here at the firm is not always financial. This is not the area of the law to get rich, as most ordinary people do not have a wad of cash to throw at a drunk driving mishap. We fight for justice, fairness, and due process one client at a time. We do it with a keen eye toward value, communication, and level of service. I want to be your OWI (DUI) or criminal lawyer. Let us earn your confidence. It will be a privilege to represent you.

If you or a loved one have been arrested for OWI (DUI) in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, or other Iowa community, contact us for a free initial consult. But remember that no attorney-client relationship is established by sending unsolicited information to lawyer over the Internet.

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