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The Champion

August 2018 , Page 40 

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Counseling the Addicted Client: A Responsible and Restorative Practice

By Jennifer Gerstenzang

Some clients come to criminal defense lawyers in what may be the darkest period of the clients’ lives. If they are facing DUI charges, their arrest could be their “rock bottom” in the journey to overcome addiction. This is a delicate and crucial time for clients, and it is important that defense lawyers are just as skillful at guiding clients toward sobriety as they are litigating in the courtroom.

Defense Attorneys Have the Authority and Ability to Initiate Change

Defense attorneys hold the knowledge and skill to help clients navigate the criminal justice system. For many clients, this is the first time they have ever been in trouble with the law, and it is a haunting and traumatic experience. They cling to counsel’s words and advice in the belief that the lawyer holds the secret to their fate. Because their freedom is at stake, they are highly motivated to achieve sobriety with a commitment and focus not previously possessed.

For this reason, a client is willing to heed counsel’s advice

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