FAQ

Questions to Ask During Your Legal Consultation

Providing Skilled & Experienced Legal Representation

Where did you attend law school?

Surprisingly, the State of California allows future lawyers to sit for the Bar Exam even if they didn't go to an American Bar Association accredited school like Stanford, University of California, etc. Many fly by night "law schools" have popped up throughout the state that allow "instruction" by correspondence or online classes amounting to little more than a 4-year bar preparation course. Many of their students never pass the Bar Exam and some can take multiple attempts over years to do so.

While the American Bar Association has only accredited 21 law schools in the State of California, over 45 law schools have come into existence with names like Lady Liberty School of Law and California Desert Trial Academy School of Law.

You can find out whether your attorney went to an ABA accredited law school here: http://www.calbar.ca.gov/Admissions

How long have you been practicing law?

How long your attorney has been practicing can help you gauge whether or not they're the right attorney for you.

Have you been to trial on a DUI case before? If so, how many times and were they successful?

This is perhaps the best indicator of the experience, quality and knowledge of your attorney. Unbelievably, many attorneys claim they are "specialists" or "experts" or "experienced" even though they have never tried a DUI case. While everyone knows the benefit of successfully settling DUI cases, the rash of "dump truck" lawyers who refuse to stand up and fight when their clients deserve their best is devastating. Devastating to their past clients, their new clients, and their future clients. The defendant's only advantage in negotiations with the prosecution is the ability to take the case to trial successfully. If your attorney constantly threatens, but never actually puts their proverbial "money where their mouth is," they quickly become no threat to the prosecution because the DA's know they will always just "give up" when push comes to shove in a courtroom.

Do speaking engagements mean you’re more qualified?

Maybe. Generally, speaking to National Organizations of lawyers and scientists is probably a good indication that your attorney is respected in those areas. However, many of the organizations are small and speaking to the same organization over and over is simply indicative that you or your friends run the seminars.

Many seminars pay for their speaker's attendance so if you're running the seminar or your friends are, it's a good way to give a break to people you like. However, being involved in local, state and national organizations that focus on DUI defense and the science involved is generally a good indicator that your attorney is serious about learning, teaching and aggressively defending your rights in your DUI case.

Does writing books or chapters in books make you a better lawyer?

No. Most books are self-published with little or no income generated. Anyone can write a book and publish it with a promise to buy so many copies. The real test is how many people bought your book or use it. The answer is often none.

Can anyone claim to be a good DUI lawyer?

Yes. As long as you are actually a lawyer. Unfortunately, lawyers have learned to be wordsmiths. Sometimes they use those talents to give you a lingering belief that they are more qualified than they are. Terms like "trial tested" and "extensive experience" and "aggressive representation" are used often but mean little. you say you are trial tested it doesn't need to be in DUI cases and it doesn't mean you won. It doesn't even denote a number. It could be trial tested in one trial that was for possession of methamphetamine that you lost.

Do you practice law in the county I was arrested?

Amazingly, with the internet marketing approach to client retention, lawyers will advertise all over the state even though they haven't walked into a courtroom in the county where your case is. Some firms employ high pressure sales teams and marketing strategists to answer your calls and sell their services only to farm out your case to the lowest paid, most inexperienced attorney in the county. While you may pay them thousands of dollars, the attorney who is appearing may see as little as $50.00 per hour to plead you guilty.

Why Choose Middlebrook & Associates?

  • 38 Years of Collective Legal Experience
  • Over 250 DUI Trials Handled - With a 97.4% Success Rate
  • Handled More Than 8,500 DMV Hearings in Kern County
  • Expert Member of California DUI Lawyers Association
  • ACS-CHAL Forensic Lawyer - Scientist Designation
  • AV Rated by martindale.com - Leading Authority on Attorney Ratings
  • Teaches Lawyers & Scientists - DUIDLA, American Academy of Forensic Science & American Chemical Society
  • Founding & Board Member - DUI Defense Lawyers Association (DUIDLA)
  • Top 100 Lawyers in America - DUI Defense

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Client Testimonials Hear from Real People Who We've Helped
  • “I was, and still am very impressed”
    Just wanted you to know that I think you did an excellent job representing me and my case. I cannot think of anything that you could have said, done, or even a question left not asked that would have affected the outcome of this trial. I was, and still am very impressed with your representation of me, your professionalism, and your presentation of my case. I have a very high opinion of you, and your ability as a defense attorney. Just for your piece of mind, I would highly recommend you to anyone I know, and if ever a need should arise, would not hesitate to use your services again myself. Please let me know that you received this message.
    - Jeremy B.
  • “Mr. Middlebrook is the man to call to help you get out of this situation as smoothly and with the best outcome as possible.”
    Everyone makes mistakes. If one of your mistakes happens to be a DUI, Mr. Middlebrook is the man to call to handle the situation. Mr. Middlebrook did the impossible in my case, and made sure my DUI did not ruin my life and career. His staff is extremely understanding and supportive through the entire process. If you are reading this it means you made the same mistake as so many others, and as so many others have come to realize; Mr. Middlebrook is the man to call to help you get out of this situation as smoothly and with the best outcome as possible. Make sure to learn from your mistakes, but in the time being stop the bleeding and call Mr. Middlebrook.
    - Christian
  • “We are very grateful to Mr. Middlebrook for his extremely professional handling of our daughter’s case”
    By way of background, I am a civil trial lawyer who practices law in another state. In 2020, after a questionable traffic stop, my daughter was arrested for DUI. Our family engaged Mr. Middlebrook to assist her. After he reviewed the evidence, Mr. Middlebrook identified the weaknesses in the State’s case and formulated a trial strategy to include the retention of an appropriate expert witness. While waiting for trial, Mr. Middlebrook prevailed in the administrative proceeding allowing my daughter to retain her driver’s license pending trial. After plea negotiations fell through, we went to trial on the criminal case. I have over 35 years of experience in a courtroom and have tried dozens of cases to verdict. On the first day of trial, I could tell that Mr. Middlebrook had the respect of the trial judge and the prosecutor. He developed an excellent rapport with the jury. In his examination of the expert witnesses for each side, Mr. Middlebrook demonstrated a deep understanding of the science related to DUI cases. His cross-examination of the arresting officer was respectful while making the officer appear to be, at best, incompetent in his handling of the stop and administration of the breathalyzer test. The jury acquitted my daughter on one charge and deadlocked on the other. An acceptable plea agreement on the remaining charge was thereafter reached allowing for all charges to eventually be dismissed and expunged from her record. We are very grateful to Mr. Middlebrook for his extremely professional handling of our daughter’s case, and I highly recommend him.
    - Ken I.
  • “I want to tell you how TRULY thankful I am to you for everything that you did for me”
    First, I want to tell you how TRULY thankful I am to you for everything that you did for me. You went above and beyond my wildest expectations and I have nothing but the most immense respect and admiration of your abilities. I know you went the extra mile for me, but I have no doubt that you are just as wonderful and passionate with all of your clients. You deserve all of the success you have Rick. It takes a very special and gifted person to juggle what you do and have all of your achievements to prove it! I wish I could appropriately express my most sincere gratitude for how well you took care of me. THANK YOU RICHARD!!
    - Jennifer M.