There are few feelings worse than having a police cruiser behind you, lights flashing, after you have made the poor decision to get behind the wheel of your car after having a few drinks or more.  At that point, what’s done is done and you need to think quickly about protecting yourself against the considerable consequences of even a first conviction for Operating Under the Influence of Alcohol.  Many people do not realize that, when the police ask you questions about whether and where you’ve been drinking, you do not have to answer. When the police ask you to exit the vehicle and take Field Sobriety Tests, you do not have to take them.  If you are arrested nonetheless (and you very well may be), you do not have to take the Breathalyzer test.  Be polite and respectfully decline.  Your refusals will not be used against you in a court of law and, in doing so, you have eliminated the three main pieces of evidence used in every OUI prosecution – admissions, Field Sobriety Tests and the Breathalyzer.  However, if you are offered a portable breath test at the scene, taking it is without risk since the reading cannot be used in court and may, if the reading is below the legal limit of .08 BAC, result in a citation instead of arrest.  Keep in mind also that many police departments videotape the actual stop and a vast majority videotape the booking process, so be aware of how you carry yourself and speak.  If you are worried about the license suspension associated with the Breathalyzer refusal, it may not be as bad as you think.  With little evidence against you, a good attorney can push your case to trial as soon as possible and, if you are found not guilty, your license will be immediately reinstated by the RMV.

  • Andrew is an experienced Massachusetts criminal defense attorney who represents individuals in all criminal matters, including…

    • Attorney Berman represents individuals and businesses in all civil matters, including…
    • Personal Injury
    • Product Liability
    • Premises Liability
    • Social Host Liability
    • Automobile Accidents
    • Attorney Malpractice
    •  

    • Commercial Lease Disputes
    • Property Damage Claims
    • Construction Site Injuries
    • Dram Shop Liability
    • Wrongful Death
    • Victims of Sexual Assault
    • Victims of Assault and Battery
    • Commercial Vehicle Accidents
    • Negligent Security
    • G.L. c. 93A (Consumer Protection)
    • Contractor and Homeowner Construction Disputes
    • Business Disputes and Contract Actions
    • Fiduciary Trustee and Estate Litigation
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    • Prospective Client Calls

      Individuals considering retaining Attorney Berman can contact the firm through the Contact form or by calling 617.723.4163. Please include in your message a short statement of the reason for contacting the office, as well as the best method and time to contact you.  Attorney Berman will return your message promptly to learn more about your case and, if appropriate, schedule an initial consultation.

      IF YOUR MATTER REQUIRES IMMEDIATE ATTENTION, PLEASE CALL OR PUT “URGENT’ IN THE SUBJECT BOX OF THE CONTACT FORM.  You will be contacted immediately.

    • The Initial Consultation

      The goal of the first meeting is for Attorney Berman to gain a clear understanding of the situation and for both attorney and client to determine whether to enter into a longer, more substantial attorney-client relationship. You should bring with you any documents and paperwork relevant to your case or, if possible, provide them beforehand. During this session, Andrew will gather relevant information, ascertain your objectives and provide you with a preliminary assessment of your situation, including possible strategies and tactics. If the decision is made to move forward, future fee arrangements and a retainer agreement (if applicable) should then be discussed.

      The initial consultation will generally last 30 to 60 minutes and is free of charge.

    • Fee Agreements

      Below is a general description of the various types of fee agreements considered by Attorney Berman. Ultimately, the type of agreement entered into, and the amount charged, depends on the nature of your case.

      Flat Fee

      A flat fee is a set amount of money that is decided upon at the beginning of the representation, before any work is done on the case. This type of agreement is generally used for certain criminal offenses or in situations that require a limited number of court appearances.

      Hourly Rate

      To state the obvious, in an hourly case, the fee you pay is calculated by multiplying the hourly rate by the number of hours the attorney spends working on your case. Hourly rate agreements are generally used in serious criminal matters, civil defense (representation of an individual or company being sued in Civil court) and certain plaintiff cases (representation of an individual or business suing someone else in Civil Court). The hourly rate and the required retainer will vary depending on type and complexity of the case.

      Contingency Fee 

      A contingency fee agreement is standard in personal injury matters (where an individual brings claims in Civil court for his or her personal injuries) and may also be used in certain other types of plaintiff cases.  The fee your attorney earns is, as the name suggests, contingent upon there being a monetary recovery in your case and there is no fee due unless we win your case.   A fairly standard percentage for a contingent fees is one-third of the total recovery.   These types of agreements are not ethically permitted in criminal cases.

    • Client Bill of Rights

      1. You are entitled to be treated with courtesy and consideration at all times by Attorney Berman and the other lawyers and non-lawyer personnel in the office.

      2. You are entitled to have Attorney Berman and any other attorney handle your legal matter competently and diligently, in accordance with the highest standards of the profession.  If you are not satisfied with how your matter is being handled, you have the right to discharge your attorney and terminate the attorney-client relationship at any time.

      3. You are entitled to Attorney Berman’s independent professional judgment and undivided loyalty uncompromised by conflicts of interest.

      4. You are entitled to be charged reasonable fees and expenses and to have Attorney Berman explain before or within a reasonable time after commencement of the representation how the fees and expenses will be computed and the manner and frequency of billing. You may refuse to enter into any arrangement for fees and expenses that you find unsatisfactory.  In hourly cases, you are entitled to request and receive a written itemized bill at reasonable intervals.

      5.  You are entitled to have your questions and concerns addressed promptly and to receive a prompt reply to your letters, telephone calls, emails, faxes, and other communications.

      6.  You are entitled to be kept reasonably informed as to the status of your matter and are entitled to have Attorney Berman promptly comply with your reasonable requests for information, including your requests for copies of papers relevant to the matter.  You are entitled to sufficient information to allow you to participate meaningfully in the development of your matter and make informed decisions regarding representation.

      7.  You are entitled to have your legitimate objectives respected.  In particular, the decision of whether to settle your matter in a civil case, or enter into a plea agreement in a criminal case, is yours alone.

      8.  You have the right to privacy in your communications with Attorney Berman, and anyone working for him or on his behalf, and to have your confidential information preserved to the extent permitted by law.

      9. You are entitled to have Attorney Berman, and anyone working for him or on his behalf, conduct himself or herself ethically in accordance with the Massachusetts Rules of Professional Responsibility.

      10.  You may not be refused representation on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin or disability.

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Please include in your message a short statement of the reason for contacting the office, as well as the best method and time to contact you. Attorney Berman will return your message promptly to learn more about your case and, if appropriate, schedule an initial consultation.

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