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DRIVING WHILE IMPAIRED – Defining “Driving”

As always, we begin our analysis by reviewing the relevant law, N.C.G.S. 20-138.1: “A person commits the offense of Impaired Driving if he drives any vehicle upon any highway, any street, or any public vehicular area within this state: While under

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DRUGGED DRIVING IN NORTH CAROLINA

Drugged Driving – or Drug DWI – is a form of “Impaired Driving,” under N.C.G.S. 20-138.1. This is the same law that the State uses to convict drunk drivers. In other words, the same law governs drunk driving and drugged driving. But, operating under the influence of drugs, and operating under the influence of alcohol, are two very different things.

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Business Card for Attorney Derek R. Fletcher
Serious cases require serious representation.
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AUTOMATION & WORKFLOW

Fletcher Legal helps Solo Attorneys and Small Law Firms automate routine practices by developing advanced Forms and Data Gathering Tools in order to eliminate redundant tasks, reduce client expenses, and free-up attorney time so you can focus on what matters: expanding your practice and generating better quality leads.
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FLETCHER LEGAL IS A CHARLOTTE-BASED LAW PRACTICE DEDICATED TO HELPING OUR CLIENTS NAVIGATE BOTH THE JUDICIAL PROCESS, AND LIFE’S MOST DIFFICULT MOMENTS. We constantly push the limits of what’s possible when it comes to integrating technology into solo practice with the goal of reducing client fees and expanding access to law. We believe in treating people the way we want to be treated.

WE FIRMLY BELIEVE THAT RESULTS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES, BUT RESULTS AREN’T EVERYTHING. We believe that relationships are key, and we only accept clients that we feel we can have a successful partnership with to reach the best results. We believe that legal emergencies rarely occur during business hours, and that it is essential for clients to have Attorney Fletcher’s personal cell phone number.

WE ACCEPT CLIENTS, NOT CASES, AND WE GO WHERE WE ARE NEEDED, ACROSS ALL 100 NORTH CAROLINA COUNTIES. We stick to what we’re good at, continually pushing the envelope and streamlining process steps. We always set our clients up for the best possible outcome.

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SERIOUS. AGGRESSIVE. EXPERIENCED. DEFENSE COUNSEL.

IT ALWAYS HAPPENS AT THE WORST POSSIBLE TIMES: whether you’ve been wrongfully accused of a crime, been the victim of an illegal search or seizure, or admittedly made a drastic mistake – serious enough to involve the law – having an experienced professional in your corner is a priceless asset.

THE ODDS ARE NOT IN YOUR FAVOR: criminal cases in this state are titled “THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA VERSUS YOU.”

THINK ABOUT THAT FOR JUST A MOMENT. The entire weight of the State – with their endless resources, their salaried, professional witnesses, their teams of trained investigators, officers, legislators, jurists, and taxpayers – all of them are coming after you. It’s an overwhelming, and lonely, experience. 

YOU NEED AN EXPERIENCED PROFESSIONAL TO FIGHT FOR YOU, to protect your reputation, to make sure both sides of the story are heard, and to conduct an independent investigation on your behalf, rather than simply accepting whatever the State’s investigators claim is true.
IT’S VIRTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO MOUNT A SOLID DEFENSE ALONE, especially when you’re having to tell your family, protect your career, your children, your home, and everything you’ve worked for in life. Don’t go at it alone.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO GO IT ALONE! If you have been charged with a crime or traffic offense, you should retain qualified and experienced counsel to protect your rights and ensure that you get a fair outcome. Attorney Derek Fletcher offers free consultations and case reviews. The staff at FLETCHER LEGAL makes themselves available nights, weekends, and remotely, to answer your questions and keep you up to date on your case’s progress.
EXPERIENCED DEFENSE COUNSEL. Attorney Derek R. Fletcher has experience representing people defending a wide variety of criminal cases. He has handled murder, financial crimes, burglary, robbery DWI / DUI, and everything from the lowest traffic tickets to the most serious felonies, including:
  • Drugged Driving;

  • Drunk Driving;

  • Larceny;

  • Embezzlement;

  • Assault;

  • Fraud;

  • Drug Possession;

  • Arson;

  • Bribery;

  • Disorderly Conduct;

  • Traffic Violations;

  • Driving While License Revoked (DWLR);
  • Drug Sale;

  • Drug Trafficking;

  • Domestic Violence;

  • White Collar Crimes;

  • Sex Crimes;

  • Weapons Offenses;

  • Probation Violations;

  • Parole Revocations;

  • Robbery;

  • Burglary;

  • Trespassing;

  • Perjury.
TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE. If you’ve been charged with a crime in North Carolina, it’s important to act fast. In order to build your defense, you need professional representation to collect and preserve evidence.
WE OFFER A CLEAR PATH TOWARDS WINNING. Attorney Derek R. Fletcher is an experienced, aggressive, North Carolina lawyer ready and willing to protect your interests. Don’t let another day pass without legal representation: contact us online now to book your free case evaluation. We promise to fight your charges for the best possible outcome. We begin by conducting a client-focused case evaluation, where the goals of representation are discussed, and expectations outlined. We provide you with a clear path forward to reaching the best possible outcome.
IT MAY SEEM LIKE THE ENTIRE WORLD IS OUT TO GET YOUR – BUT NOT THE TEAM HERE AT FLETCHER LEGAL. We’ve represented countless Carolinian’s who’ve found themselves in the exact same predicament. We’ve asked of them the same thing we will ask of you: turn this problem over to us; let us take it from here. I’m asking you to place your trust in myself and Fletcher Legal, and I promise you that I will never have to ask for it again. Don’t go it alone; don’t bargain shop when your freedom is on the line – call an experienced professional who can get the job done right. The quicker you act in a criminal case, the better the outcome you can generally obtain.
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CRIMINAL DEFENSE REPRESENTATION

Many clients don’t realize the serious collateral consequences that oftentimes follow traffic convictions. This includes driver license suspensions, increased insurance premiums, and DMV points. Simply “paying-off” a speeding ticket, or other “waivable” charge, has the same effect as pleading guilty to the crime as-is. Don’t ever plead (or pay-off) a traffic offense without first speaking to an experienced North Carolina traffic attorney.

Driving While Impaired (DWI) is a serious crime that carries mandatory license revocation, and (in the presence of 1 or more grossly aggravating factors) mandatory jail time. At Fletcher Legal, we are frequently able to help clients get their driver license back up until the court date which ultimately resolves the charge. We line our clients up for success: meaning that we are oftentimes able to help clients obtain limited driving privileges, allowing them to get to-and-from work and school. Don’t wait another day – call Fletcher Legal now for your free case analysis.

MISDEMEANORS ∙ DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CHARGES

The vast majority of crimes heard in North Carolina courts are misdemeanors, which appear more than 3 times as often as felonies. Simply being charged with certain domestic violence offenses carries serious reprocussions, including a prohibition on purchasing firearms. If you’ve been charged with Assault on Female, Communicating Threats, Injury to Personal Property, Violating a 50B Order (Domestic violence Restraining Order), or any other domestic violence offense, call Fletcher Legal today for your free case evaluation.

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THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM RARELY SHOWS MERCY TOWARDS THOSE CHARGED WITH IMPAIRED DRIVING. Whether you’ve been accused of Drunk Driving, Drugged Driving, Boating While Impaired, Driving after consuming < 21, or even Driving after consuming lawfully prescribed medication, the consequences are all equally serious. The State will attack you with every tool in their arsenal. If you are found guilty, or plead guilty to Impaired Driving, you’re facing serious, and long-lasting consequences, including:

  • Having a permanent criminal record;

  • Professional License Revocation or Suspension;

  • Expensive Fines;

  • House Arrest;

  • Supervised Probation;

  • Unsupervised Probation;

  • Community Service;

  • Jail or Prison Sentence;

  • CAM (Continuous Alcohol Monitoring) Bracelet;

  • Court Costs;

  • Mandatory Substance Abuse Treatment;

  • Ankle Monitor;

  • Driver’s License Suspension or Revocation.

IMPAIRED DRIVING CHARGES ARE EXTREMELY TECHNICAL, PERHAPS MORE SO THAN MURDER. Driving While Impaired [DWI] (also called Driving Under the Influence [DUI], Drugged Driving [Drug DWI] or simply “Impaired Driving”) are perhaps the most technical crimes in the entire State Code. And beating a DWI charge, contrary to popular belief, has nothing to do with how much you blew, what the cops found in your car, or or whether you were driving on a suspended or valid license. These cases, more so than any other, depend entirely on the most minute of details only a trained professional would possibly recognize.

STALE CASES BECOME HARDER TO DEFEND WITH EVERY PASSING DAY. It’s absolutely critical that you move fast, because over time, your defense becomes increasingly more difficult. Over time, evidence disappears, witnesses move across the country, and video surveillance tapes are deleted to clear hard drive space. As a general rule, the quicker you act, the better odds you have of securing a great outcome.
WE ALWAYS SET OUR CLIENTS UP FOR SUCCESS. Even when it looks like the cards are all stacked against you, we’re frequently able to help our first-time clients obtain Limited Driving Priviliges so that they can drive to school and to work. No matter how bad it looks, with enough time on our side, we’re almost always able to position our clients into the very best of light when they one day appear before a judge. And although every case is factually different, we consistently aim for the best scenario under any given set of facts.
HOW MUCH IS YOUR FUTURE WORTH? Never bargain shop when it comes to your future, your family, or your livelihood! When looking for a DWI attorney, you should have only one hiring criteria on your mind: who can get the job done. And although I would never tell you who to hire or not hire, if you’re able to persuade an attorney to lower his fee for you – who else do you think can persuade that same attorney? How well do you believe they’ll fight for you?

HOW A LAWYER CAN HELP WITH YOUR CRIMINAL CHARGE(S)

SENTENCING. Once you’re past the guilt or innocence phase, and the judge is about to enter judgment, your lawyer has an opportunity to recommend a particular sentence to the court. A good lawyer can clearly and convincingly articulate to the judge why you acted the way you did, what you have done to repair the damage you caused, and any other factors that mitigate your culpability in the offense. Defense Counsel’s primary duty, at this stage, is to seek (and persuade a judge) to sentence the defendant near the minimum sentence. This isn’t always easy; especially when a District Attorney adamantly demands he be sentenced to the max.
MITIGATING FACTORS. An experienced attorney will learn what remedial actions his client has taken pre-trial, and explain how they should mitigate the sentence. Has the defendant voluntarily entered substance abuse treatment after being charged with a DWI/DUI? If so, Counsel should mention that the client sought treatment voluntarily, whether the treatment was inpatient or outpatient, how long the program lasted, whether the client has a sponsor, how many AA or NA meetings a week they attend, and that they just picked up a 90 day chip.

Experienced lawyers know what facts will mitigate the damage at sentencing, and can be the difference between community service and active jail time.

WHERE WE GO: GEOGRAPHIC PRACTICE AREAS

Although we travel across the entire State of North Carolina – to each and every District and Superior Court – we are based in Charlotte. You could say that our home base consists of the following:

Serving: Mecklenburg, Union, Gaston, Cabarrus, Iredell, Rowan, Cleveland, Lincoln, Stanly, Davidson, Catawba, and Anson Counties, as well as Charlotte, Huntersville, Cornelius, Davidson, Lake Norman, Mooresville, Troutman, Statesville, Matthews, Mint Hill, Harrisburg, Weddington, Waxhaw, Indian Trail, Monroe, Wadesboro, Wingate, Polkton, Concord, Kannapolis, China Grove, Salisbury, Lexington, Thomasville, High Point, Denver, Lincolnton, Newton, Conover, Hickory, Belmont, Lowell, Mt. Holly, Lowesville, Gastonia, Dallas, Bessemer City, Kings Mountain, Shelby, Pineville, Midland, Locust, Albemarle, Rockingham, Asheville, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Raleigh, and Wilmington.

FLETCHER LEGAL HELPS CLIENTS JUST LIKE YOU!

SERIOUS CASES REQUIRE SERIOUS REPRESENTATION. If you or someone you know has questions restoring their firearm rights, or to begin the process of restoring your gun rights now, call FLETCHER LEGAL at 704-747-7262, shoot that number a text, step into our virtual lobby for a video call, or book an appointment now for your free case evaluation. Fletcher Legal has helped clients restore North Carolina firearm rights, appeal from pistol purchase denials, and challenge concealed carry decisions. We conduct independent investigations in every case we take, which reduces denials, and ensures a smooth hearing.
VIRTUAL SERVICES REDUCE CLIENT EXPENSES. Schedule an appointment today to speak with Attorney Fletcher, either by video call, text message, or phone call. We offer flexible payment arrangements, independent investigations, and 24 x 7 emergency services. Book an appointment online now to begin building your defense.
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FORMS & VIEWS

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QUICKLINKS

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STATUTE SEARCH

Search by Statute Name, Number or Keyword.

NEWS & UPDATES

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ADVICE & BLOGROLL

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Serious cases require serious representation.

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Fletcher Legal helps Solo Attorneys and Small Law Firms automate routine practices by developing advanced Forms and Data Gathering Tools in order to eliminate redundant tasks, reduce client expenses, and free-up attorney time so you can focus on what matters: expanding your practice and generating better quality leads.

FLETCHER LEGAL ASSISTS SOLO ATTORNEYS AND SMALL LAW FIRMS BY AUTOMATING ROUTINE TASKS, MANAGING DATA, AND DESIGNING BEAUTIFUL WEBSITES THEY’RE PROUD TO SHOW THE WORLD. Your website says a lot about you: it’s the face that choose to present to the world. Prospective clients increasingly search for counsel online, and make decisions whether to retain your services sometimes based on the appearance of your homepage alone. Obviously, small law firms lack the resources of BigLaw; all too often, their single largest marketing resource – their website – looks sad, dilapidated, and outdated.

WHAT DOES YOUR WEBSITE SAY ABOUT YOU? During the first decade of managing my solo practice, I chose not to have a website rather than having one that looked cheap and thrown together. When I did finally choose to incorporate a website into my practice, I spent a year teaching myself how to design, brand, build, and integrate cutting edge tools in to my site, rather than outsourcing the job. I invested a year of my life into learning this skill because I knew I couldn’t afford to hire a professional designer to build the website I knew my practice deserved. And I refused to settle for a website that looked sloppy, unprofessional, and amateur.

THE SKILLS I HAVE LEARNED WILL FOREVER CHANGE THE WAY I PRACTICE LAW. Things will never be the same again: aside from moving to an entirely paperless law practice, I learned how to harness the power of web forms and dynamic PDF generation. These are crucial, cutting edge technologies that automatically avail my Firm as advantage that places me on level footing with BigLaw. My time has been freed-up to focus on what I want to do with my Firm. I’m no longer bound to the monotonous, routine tasks that consumed so much of my valuable time, and I am here to share those skills with you.

WE ACCEPT CLIENTS, NOT CASES. My job is to help small law firms focus on the things that matter, by making their jobs easier and reducing client expenses. With a client-focused approach that’s results-oriented, I want to help your law firm succeed and show off the best aspects of your practice to prospective and current clients.

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AUTOMATION & WORKFLOW

TIME IS YOUR MOST VALUABLE ASSET. Solo Attorneys and lawyers at small law firms have very difficult jobs. Aside from practicing law, they’re charged with being the IT professional, generating new business, expanding their practice areas, learning new law, billing and collections, as well as being the janitor and receptionist. They lick every envelope going out. And as any Solo Attorney will tell you, their most valuable asset is time; there’s never enough hours in the day to accomplish everything on the to-do list.

AUTOMATE EVERYTHING YOU CAN. Automating workflow is the key to success for any lawyer. The entire purpose of form creating is so that one isn’t required to reinvent to wheel for every new client. Whatever can be automated, should be automated. At Fletcher Legal, we help SmallLaw level the playing field by automating routine tasks that needlessly take attorney time from where it can better be spent.

WHAT TASKS CAN EASILY BE IMPLEMENTED BY A SMALL LAW PRACTICE? The first tasks that a small law firm should automate include Client Intake and gathering Client Data. Whenever possible the burden of completing routine documents should be shifted from the Attorney onto the client. In a criminal defense practice, the first and easiest documents to automate include:

  • Client Intake Questionnaires

  • Standard Fee Agreements

  • Appearance of Counsel

  • Waiver of Appearance
  • Client Payment Plans

  • Welcome Letters

  • Closed File Letters

  • Benefits & Features of your Law Firm’s Website

WHAT’S THE PROCESS FOR AUTOMATING STANDARD LEGAL DOCUMENTS? The first forms take time to create – there’s no doubt about that. But, once created, you’ll never have to worry about reinventing the wheel if done properly. We being in Microsoft Word, keeping in mind what the finished product should look like. Anytime a form field will be inserted down the road, we leave a blank space, or inclue a line of underscores that look like this: ___________________.

SAVE THE WORD DOCUMENT AS A PDF AND BEGIN FORM EDITING WITHIN ACROBAT PRO. The document should be saved as both a Microsoft Word document (in case later changes need to be made), as well as a PDF document. Next, we open the PDF in Acrobat and insert our form fields. We spend a significant amount of time making sure our texts match what we created in Word, and the placement of our fields lines up properly with the text we drafted in Word.

CREATE YOUR WEB FORM USING A PREMIUM WORDPRESS PLUGIN. After we have a properly working PDF fillable form, we create our web form using a WordPress Form plugin, such as Formidable Forms or WP Forms. After the questions are drafted, and our web form is complete, we upload the form to a new page using a standard template we’ve created in Elementor.

OUTCOME & RESULTS. Lastly, we upload the PDF document using special software that allows us to map our Form fields to our web form, then calibrate the settings to email us the finished document, and voila! We’ve now automated a routine task down to the bare minimum amount of work necessary, shifted the burden of form completion onto the client, and have a gorgeous template for future use. It should complicated because it is – but that’s where we can help.

FLETCHER LEGAL HELPS LAW FIRMS JUST LIKE YOURS AUTOMATE ITS STANDARD PRACTICES. If you’d like to know more about how you can put us to work automating your routine practices, give us a call or hop into our virtual waiting room to speak with a member of our staff.

FLETCHER LEGAL HELPS LAW FIRMS JUST LIKE YOURS DESIGN GORGEOUS WEBSITES, AUTOMATE ROUTINE PROCESSES, AND MANAGE CLIENT DATA.

SERIOUS LAW FIRMS REQUIRE SERIOUS WEBSITES. If your web presence is lacking, your website isn’t much to be proud of, or you would just like to learn more about the power of web forms or how Fletcher Legal can help you with PDF Generation, step into our virtual lobby for a no cost, no obligation video call. Fletcher Legal doesn’t take cases; we take clients. We focus on building long term relationships to help clients achieve their long terms goals.

VIRTUAL SERVICES REDUCE CLIENT EXPENSES. Schedule an appointment today to speak with Attorney Fletcher, either by video call, text message, or phone call. We offer flexible payment arrangements, independent investigations, and 24 x 7 emergency services. Book an appointment online now to begin building your brand.

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