How Experienced Lawyers Defend a Client Against Drug Charges

drug charges attorney vancouver wa

When facing drug charges, your best defense is to have an experienced lawyer on your side to help you navigate your case.

Experienced attorneys understand the state and Federal law, as well as the severity of your charge, whether it be a misdemeanor or felony drug charge. The right lawyer will employ unique strategies to help your defense. A strong legal defense can help minimize any sentencing and even get your case thrown out.

How Will An Experienced Lawyer Defend Me Against Drug Charges?


A good lawyer will treat each drug charge differently; for example, a drug possession charge needs a different defense than drug manufacturing charges. An experienced attorney will create a unique defense for your case.

A seasoned lawyer will start your legal defense against a drug charge — especially a drug possession charge — by trying to prove the police officer violated your Fourth Amendment rights in finding and seizing any drug evidence. If the lawyer proves this, any evidence would be thrown out and drastically help your chances in the case.

Other defenses can include a chain of custody problems with law enforcement, factual defenses, and other shoddy police work. Your attorney can also claim a doctor prescribed the drug but will need to prove it was a prescription drug and you had no intent to distribute.

Depending on the circumstances, if a conviction is imminent, a good lawyer can explore alternative sentencing options for you, such as diversion, drug offender sentencing alternatives, drug court, or a first-time offender waiver.

How Do I Find An Experienced Lawyer To Defend Against Drug Charges?

If you’re looking for a seasoned attorney to represent you in a drug charge case, take advantage of VanWa Legal’s free consultation. VanWa Legal has tried hundreds of cases in Clark County and Vancouver, WA.

We’ll evaluate your case during the consultation and inform you about the possible legal strategies we can employ to help dismiss the case. Even if you did commit the crime, reaching out to a criminal defense lawyer can help minimize your charge’s consequences. VanWa Legal will work to lessen the charges, so your life isn’t derailed.

Hiring the right lawyer will help minimize your risk of losing key government benefits if convicted. VanWa Legal offers flat-free pricing, so you understand the cost upfront. We aim to make our services accessible for all potential clients so you can get the best representation in your case.

Defenses Against Domestic Violence Charges

Being falsely accused of domestic violence can turn your entire life upside down. Preparing a defense against domestic violence charges will require a strong legal strategy, so contact a criminal defense lawyer fluent in Washington State law right away.

What Is Considered Domestic Violence In Washington State?

Before you and your criminal defense lawyer build your defense against the domestic violence charges, checking to ensure jurisdiction has been met for the alleged crime to be considered domestic violence.

In Washington State, domestic violence is considered a family or household member committing physical harm, bodily injury, assault, the infliction of fear of imminent physical harm, sexual assault, or stalking against the victim.

The Evergreen State considers a family or household member to be:

  • Spouses and former spouses;
  • Parents of a child;
  • Adults related by blood or marriage;
  • Adults who currently live or previously resided together;
  • Anyone 16 years of age or older who currently live together or previously lived together;
  • Anyone 16 years of age or older who currently or previously have had a dating relationship;
  • Persons 16 years of age or older who have or have had a dating relationship;
  • Persons with a biological or legal parent-child relationship, such as stepparents or grandparents.

What Are Possible Defenses Against Domestic Violence Charges In Washington State?

Typically, two strategies exist for defendants to prove their innocence: self-defense and de minimis infractions. When choosing self-defense, your attorney’s legal strategy is to establish the plaintiff suffered injuries because you were legitimately trying to defend yourself against imminent bodily harm. In this case, you’d be justified in the force used against the plaintiff to protect yourself.

If your legal team chooses a de minimis infraction defense, the goal is to prove that your conduct was so minor that it is “too trivial to be considered a criminal offense.”

What Can I Do To Help Defend Myself Against Domestic Violence Charges?

The best thing you can do to defend yourself against domestic violence charges is to contact VanWa Legal right away and take advantage of our firm’s free consultation to better understand your case.

Typically, domestic violence cases move quickly — sometimes, the hearing is held within ten days of the original charge — so employing a lawyer as soon as possible increases your chances of winning your case.

If you choose to work with VanWa Legals’ attorneys, our team will conduct pretrial discovery to gather medical records, police reports, and other relevant documents to build your defense.

To help with your defense while the case is ongoing, do not contact the plaintiff under any circumstances.

What Restrictions Can You Incur With a Pending DUI Charge?

In the United State’s legal system, a defendant is considered innocent until proven guilty. But when charged with driving under the influence (DUI), you’ll face restrictions even before a conviction.

Convictions can result in fines and jail time. Acquiring strong legal help before you move forward in the DUI process will only help strengthen your cases and reduce the chances of facing long term restrictions.

What Restrictions Can You Incur With a Pending DUI Charge?

If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI and your court date is pending, the DMV will generally suspend your license. When you are pulled over, if you refuse a field sobriety test, know your license will automatically be suspended.

You may fight the suspension by requesting a hearing with the DMV within seven days of your arrest. If the hearing examiner grants your license back, you can drive until your legal hearing.

It’s important to note even if the DMV hearing grants you your license back pending a trial, if you’re convicted, your license will be revoked again, and a DMV hearing won’t help.

If you lose your hearing, the suspension will last anywhere from 90 days to two years, depending on your charge and past record severity.

The DMV will likely make your driver’s license probationary for the next five years if convicted.

What Should I Do If I’m Facing A Pending DUI Charge?

If you have been arrested for DUI, contact the offices of VanWa Legal right away. Sometimes, DUI hearings happen quickly, so speaking with our expert lawyers right away will strengthen your chances and your case.

VanWa Legal offers free consultations within 24 hours of you reaching out to us. Washington DUI laws evolve constantly, so having an experienced lawyer based in the area will give you a strong advantage. A typical DUI case features expert witness and scientific evidence that we need to start collecting right away to build your strategy.

Often, our expert lawyers can avoid a DUI trial’s stress and cost by negotiating a positive outcome for you.

Domestic Violence Types in Washington State

Domestic violence encaptures more than a partner hitting a family member or spouse. The term domestic violence covers a broad range of violent acts in Washington State. Understanding what it coves, will help you understand if you have been a victim of domestic violence or if you’re being accused of it.

Who Can Commit Domestic Violence?

Before understanding what acts constitute domestic violence, understand who can commit it. Washington State defines domestic abuse as a “family or household member” committing the act against another. So this can include parents, spouses, partners, grandparents, or cousins, depending on who lives in the household.

What Is Domestic Violence?

In Washington State, if someone who is related to you or shares the same household does any of the following, it will be considered domestic violence if they:

  • intentionally causing physical pain, physical injury, or illness
  • intentionally impairing a physical condition
  • commit an unwanted or illegal sexual assault
  • commit a physical activity that may cause the victim to fear any violence, pain, injury, or sexual assault will occur

What Crimes Also Encompass Domestic Violence?

Domestic Violence goes beyond physical assault; any of the following crimes can fall into this category:

  • Assault
  • Manslaughter or murder
  • Reckless endangerment
  • Coercion
  • Burglary
  • Criminal trespass
  • Property damage
  • Kidnapping
  • Interfering with the reporting of domestic violence
  • Rape
  • Violation of protection order: this includes any letters, emails, texts, or contact through a third party
  • Stalking or cyberstalking
  • False imprisonment: believing you can not leave without risk of injury to you or someone you love

In many cases, even being afraid for your life or being the recipient of violence can constitute domestic violence, as long as a “reasonable” person also in that situation would also be fearful.

What Should I Do If I’m Involved In A Domestic Violence Case?

If you are the victim of domestic violence or feel you have been wrongfully accused of a domestic violence act, reach out to the knowledgeable legal team at VanWa Legal.

We know domestic violence cases are sensitive for you and your family and extremely emotionally trying.

We aim to ease this burden by providing you excellent representation. To start, we offer a free consultation so you can better understand the merits of your case and feel confident you’re making the right decision by choosing VanWa Legal as your lawyer. We also offer payment plans to help ease the stress of paying for a domestic violence case.

We don’t want this case to affect the rest of your life, so we’ll be here for you when you need the help the most.

Mistakes That Can Cause You to Break a Protective Order

If you have been served a protective order, you must understand the guidelines you must adhere to. As the punishment for making a mistake and breaking a protective order can often be more severe than what you were first accused of.

Sometimes these orders may be temporary or permanent, but following them to a tee is essential to keep your freedom.

What Mistakes Can Make That Would Break A Protective Order?

After you have been served a protective order, even going home can trigger your arrest. If you live with the person or people who the protective order is for, you can no longer stay at that residence. It would be best if you found somewhere else to stay until your case is settled.

In fact, when there is a “no-contact” clause of the protective order, any contact or communication with the person, the protective order is shielding will be considered breaking the order. This includes emails, texts, letters, and phone calls.

If you decide to appeal a protective order, you need to notify the other person involved of the legal plan; however, doing this in person would break the order, so be sure to have your attorney deliver it. Any attempt to contact this person through a third party would be considered breaking the order if there is a no contact-clause of the order.

When a protective order is served, you may not contact the person who requested it nor their children or other family members, even if you share those kids and relatives.

You may not try to contact any of these people at their home, place of employment, around their car, and your children’s school or childcare facility.

If you see the person who requested the order anywhere, even at a grocery market, you must leave, or you will violate the protective order.

Even if the protectee contacts you and permits you to contact them — don’t do it. You are still breaking the order even if the protectee contacts you first.

What Should I Do If I Have A Protective Order Against Me?

If you have been served with a protective order, reach out to the expert criminal defense lawyers at VanWa Legal. Our team has vast experience in Washington State law and understands the inner workings of protective orders in this state.

We know this is an already stressful time, so we offer free consultations so we can discuss your case and you can understand the legal strategy we’d use. We also proudly provide flexible flat-fee payment plans and delegate some billable hours to paralegals to lower your costs, so you can enlist the legal representation you deserve.

Understanding Bail in Domestic Abuse Cases

When accused of domestic violence, Washington State requires mandatory arrest when probable cause exists.

This means the alleged accuser faces defending their innocence, as well as posting a hefty bail sum before being allowed to walk free pending trial. If you’re worried about posting bail in a domestic abuse case, you have a few options available to you.

What Are The Conditions Of Bail In A Domestic Abuse Case?

Depending on the severity of the charge and the alleged abuser’s record, a judge will rule in the following ways; the alleged abuser is

  • released on own recognizance, with no bail, which means the accused promises to return for future proceedings
  • released on own recognizance, with bail
  • detained until the pending trial is completed
  • released only if bail or cash bond is paid
  • not allowed to contact the victim
  • not allowed to have any firearms pending trial
  • not allowed to possess or consume alcohol or drugs while pending trial
  • subject to random urine analysis or drug and alcohol assessments
  • subject to pretrial supervision

If you live with your accuser and the judge demands a no-contact order, you need to find temporary housing during the trial.

How Can I Pay For Bail In A Domestic Abuse Case?

A judge will set bail for alleged domestic abusers based on previous offenses and their crimes’ severity. Bail may be set at a lower amount the accused can quickly pay in cash.

However, for larger bail sums, the accused can reach out to friends and family for help or work with a bond dealer to pay for their release. Typically, you’ll need to pay about 15 percent of the total bail amount for a bond dealer to post your bail.

What Should I Do If I Need To Post Bail In A Domestic Abuse Case?

If you or a loved one have been arrested for domestic abuse, contact the legal team at VanWa Legal right away to help you navigate your case, discuss your options for posting bail, and push for a speedy release.

Van Wa Legal’s team boasts vast experience in criminal defense cases and specifically domestic abuse. We specialize in Washington State law and can help you understand what you’re up against. Washington prosecutors take domestic abuse allegations very seriously and push for conviction, so you’ll need someone as equally vigilant on your side.

Bond already presents as a hefty expense, so VanWa Legal offers free consultations to potential clients. We can help you create a proper defense, petition for a no-contact order to be dropped, and help with your unique domestic violence case.

Can You Fight a Restraining Order in Washington State?

If you believe you have been wrongfully served with a restraining order in Washington State, you do have a chance to fight this order.

To effectively fight the restraining order, you’ll need expert legal counsel and carefully follow the letter of the law.

Can You Fight a Restraining Order in Washington State?

Before a judge allows a restraining order, a temporary restraining order will be served. A judge can serve a temporary restraining order without you present and sets a date for a more formal hearing that you will appear. Fight Restraining Order

During this second hearing will be your chance to fight the restraining order. During this hearing will be your chance to tell your side of the story. Once the judge has ruled, an appeal rarely overturns the judge’s decision, so it’s important to get this right.

After the initial hearing, if you are looking to terminate the order, Washington law requires that you file a motion to set aside the restraining order. With the help of a lawyer, put a specific reason you feel the restraining order should be terminated in your motion.

Next, send a copy of the motion to terminate the mail’s restraining order to the person who filed for the original restraining order. Delivering the motion via the mail is critical; delivering it in person would violate the restraining order and could land you in bigger trouble.

Then, you’ll need a hearing date from either the clerk of the court or from the administrative assistant of the judge assigned to the case. Written notification of the hearing date needs to be sent to the person who filed the restraining order. At the hearing, your lawyer will present evidence as to why the restraining order should be terminated.

What Should I Do If I’ve Been Severed With A Restraining Order In Washington State?

If you have been served with a temporary restraining order in Washington State, reach out to the legal team at VanWa Legal right away. Our team can advise you on your rights and potential next steps.

Responding on time to the temporary order sets the tone for your entire case, and sometimes you’ll have less than four days to respond. Because of this time limit, it’s critical you call VanWa Legal right away. Your best shot at fighting the restraining order requires a seasoned criminal attorney on your side.

During the hearing, we will help you fight the restraining order. This brief hearing is your one shot to fight the restraining order, so it’s essential you have the proper representation right away.

Can I Get a Commercial Driver’s License With a DUI in Washington State?

Commercial Drivers and Truckers

Motorists convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol in Washington State may face fines and jail time. For drivers who planned to pursue a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or already have one, your DUI has jeopardized your status and possibly your ability to keep that particular license.

If the state revokes your CDL, your livelihood and career may be in jeopardy.

How Long Will Washington State Revoke For My Commerical Driver’s License After A DUI?

When a driver who has a CDL commits their first DUI, regardless if they were driving a commercial vehicle or another vehicle, their CDL will be revoked for one year. However, if the driver was transporting hazardous materials at the time of the DUI, their CDL will be revoked for three years.

If a driver commits a second DUI offense, their CDL will be revoked for life.

How Do I Requalify For A Commerical Driver’s License After A DUI Offense?

If you have been charged with a DUI and want to requalify for a CDL, first you’ll need to wait one year. You will need to pay a $35 re-qualification fee and pass the CDL knowledge and skills tests again. If you were driving with hazardous materials, you’d need to pass an additional knowledge test and possibly pass a background check.

If you have been convicted of two or more DUI’s, you will be banned from requalifying. However, you can request an administrative review to appeal this decision.

Will I Face Additional Penalties For A DUI Besides Losing My CDL?

If you were caught and convicted of a DUI, regardless of the type of vehicle you were driving, you have more to worry about than only losing your CDL. You may need to pay a hefty fine or even face jail time.

If it’s your first offense, you face one to 364 days in jail or $350 to $5,000 in fines. For second offenses, you may need to serve 30 to 364 days in jail or $500 to $5,000 in fines. For third offenses, Washington States imposes a jail sentence of 90 to 364 days and/or a $1,000 to $5,000 fine.

Your regular driver’s license may also be revoked anywhere from 90 days for first offenses to three years for a third offense.

What Should I Do Next If A DUI Revoked My Commerical Driver’s License In Washington?

If you have been charged with a DUI and fear your CDL will be revoked, contact Roger Priest at VanWa Legal right away.

Roger Priest has years of experience handling hundreds of criminal defense cases, specifically related to DUI in Clark County. The priest has handled countless DUI cases and has won dozens of DUI trials. In many cases, Preist and the VanWa Legal team will negotiate on your behalf to achieve the best possible outcome for your DUI penalty and reduce the cost of a trial to you.

The priest can help you minimize the damage of a DUI charge in Vancouver, WA, and help guide you to requalify for your CDL.

Defending Yourself After a Second DUI Charge

Being convicted of a DUI for a second time can result in layers of penalties, including jail time, onerous fines, and losing your license for years. Throw in ignition interlock devices and other even less pleasant outcomes, and you can quickly see the need for expert legal help as quickly as you can get it. With experienced counsel, it is possible to get charges dismissed or significantly reduced.

Read more

Collateral Damage from False Accusations of Domestic Abuse

Domestic violence is rightly decried as abhorrent behavior and it is universally accepted that perpetrators of spousal and other domestic abuse should be punished to the full extent of the law. But heavy-handed laws, overzealous social workers and even well-meaning friends of alleged victims of abuse can create an environment where it is all too easy to falsely accuse a spouse or other cohabitant and cause serious damage to that person’s life. Even if the accused is later exonerated, often the damage to the persons reputation will be permanently colored in the eyes of their peers.

Read more