Our Process

If you have been charged with a DUI anywhere in northern Georgia, contact Chestney & Sullivan to speak directly to one of our DUI specialists at 404.816.8777.  An experienced Georgia DUI trial attorney is available 27/7 to discuss your case.  During that initial call, one of our lawyers will answer any urgent questions you may have.  The only time you will not speak directly to a lawyer is if everyone is in court.  If that happens, rest assured, one of our lawyers will contact you by phone — usually before the day is through.

While you may have many questions during your initial call, we encourage you to save most of them for your in-depth personal consultation at our office.  One of our lawyers will spend about an hour with you reviewing the details of your case and attempting to identify any legal issues that can be raised to make your case more defensible.  During that meeting we will also outline the legal process and address any additional questions you may have.  We will explain our fee structure, ensuring that you understand exactly what we are agreeing to do for the fee quoted.  We almost always set a flat fee for the entire case, including trial if necessary.

At this meeting, you will be advised of your driving status and of the immediate steps that need to be taken to protect your driving privileges.  In most cases, an administrative suspension has already been initiated, and a written request for a hearing must be delivered to the Department of Driver Services within TEN BUSINESS DAYS of your arrest.  This is usually two weeks, giving you sufficient time to decide on your legal representation before trying to send this request yourself.  But if you are still undecided as your deadline is approaching, we will be happy to assist you in sending this simple letter to the DDS — at no charge.

Of course, if you are out of state or otherwise unavailable for a personal visit to our office, one of the lawyers will set aside the time necessary to conduct this consultation by telephone.

When you hire Chestney & Sullivan to defend your DUI case, we immediately launch an exhaustive investigation into the facts.  You are asked to complete a modest questionnaire to supplement the facts discussed at the initial consultation.  At the same time, we immediately begin gathering the necessary information from the police agency or other public information sources.  Our investigator, Ann Deal, gathers all of the discovery for every case and is available to answer any questions you have about the progress of your investigation. 

Of course, if your ten-day letter to DDS has not been sent, that is taken care of in a timely manner.

Once the investigation is substantially complete, your file is examined by the lead counsel in your case, and your case is brought to one of our weekly file meetings for discussion.  There, all four lawyers at the firm will collaborate to recognize legal issues, discuss the judge, prosecutor and police officers in the case, and begin to identify a theme for the overall defense.  Often an administrative hearing has been scheduled by this time, so we also discuss a specific strategy for that stage of the case.

As the case progresses, our Office Manager, Janet Hamm, will send you an email or paper notice for every court appearance or administrative hearing.  In most cases, the notice will inform you that your appearance will not be necessary, but if you are required to be there, you will have ample time to discuss with your lead counsel.

You may be surprised to learn that the successful defense of a Georgia DUI case can often take more than a year. We actually have cases that are two or more years old and still have not gone to trial. There may be periods of time, therefore, when nothing can be done with your case but wait! But you are always welcome to call us as frequently as you like to check on the status of your DUI case.

Once your case is closed, we will send you a letter clearly describing the final disposition, along with any remaining conditions you are obligated to complete.