Frequently Asked questions

Looking for competent answers to your legal questions? Explore our Frequently Asked Questions section to gain insights on South Carolina traffic laws, DUI charges, and more. Trust Thompson & Hiller, your go-to Columbia, SC attorneys, for reliable, up-to-date legal information and personalized advice tailored to your unique situation.

General FAQ

1. What services are Thompson & Hiller experienced in?

Thompson & Hiller are Columbia, SC-based criminal defense lawyers are seasoned in DUI, domestic violence, drug offenses, traffic laws, theft, sexual misconduct, and bond hearings. Turn to us for comprehensive legal representation.

2. How do I choose the right criminal defense attorney?

Selecting the right criminal defense attorney is crucial. Consider Thompson & Hiller’s vast experience and client testimonials as indicators of our competence in Columbia, SC.

3. Are free consultations available?

Yes, Thompson & Hiller offer free consultations to evaluate your case. Contact us today for personalized legal advice in Columbia, SC.

Message an Attorney


1. How do I find the best DUI lawyer in Columbia, SC?

To find the best DUI lawyer in Columbia, SC, look no further than Thompson & Hiller. Our proven track record and personalized approach to DUI cases set us apart.

2. What steps should I take immediately after being arrested?

If you’re arrested in Columbia, SC, the first step is to exercise your right to remain silent and request legal representation. Contact Thompson & Hiller immediately for urgent advice and to safeguard your rights throughout the legal process.

3. What are the penalties for a first-time DUI in South Carolina?

First-time DUI offenders in South Carolina can face fines, license suspension, and even jail time. Trust Thompson & Hiller for DUI representation in Columbia, SC.

4. How does a DUI affect my driving record?

A DUI conviction will have a long-term impact on your driving record, affecting your insurance rates and potentially your employment. Consult Thompson & Hiller for advice on how to best manage these consequences.

5. Can I refuse a breathalyzer test?

You can refuse a breathalyzer in South Carolina, but it may result in immediate license suspension. Contact Thompson & Hiller to understand your rights and options.

6. What is the legal blood alcohol limit in South Carolina?

The legal blood alcohol limit in South Carolina is 0.08%. Exceeding this limit can lead to DUI charges; consult Thompson & Hiller for legal defense strategies.

7. How can I fight a DUI charge?

Fighting a DUI charge involves challenging the evidence or procedures used in your arrest. Thompson & Hiller can guide you through this complicated legal process in Columbia, SC.

8. What happens if I’m charged with DUI while underage?

Underage DUI charges carry stringent penalties, including license suspension and mandatory education programs. Turn to Thompson & Hiller for a legal defense in such cases.

9. Can a DUI charge affect my employment?

Yes, a DUI conviction can impact your employment, particularly if driving is a job requirement. Consult Thompson & Hiller for strategies to mitigate this risk.

10. Do I need to disclose a DUI on job applications?

Disclosure requirements vary by employer. Thompson & Hiller can advise you on when and how to disclose a DUI conviction during your job search.

11. Can a DUI be expunged from my record?

Expungement eligibility for a DUI depends on several factors, including the nature of the offense. Contact Thompson & Hiller to discuss your options for expunging a DUI in Columbia, SC.

12. What is the difference between DUI and DWI?

DUI stands for “Driving Under the Influence,” while DWI is “Driving While Intoxicated.” While the terms are often used interchangeably, the specific definitions and penalties can vary. Trust Thompson & Hiller to clarify the nuances and defend your case.


Drug Charges FAQ

1. What are the different types of drug charges in South Carolina?

In South Carolina, drug charges range from simple possession to trafficking, with varying penalties. For knowledgeable defense on any drug-related charges, consult Thompson & Hiller in Columbia, SC.

2. What are the penalties for marijuana possession?

Marijuana possession penalties in South Carolina can include fines and jail time, depending on the quantity and prior offenses. Trust Thompson & Hiller for personalized defense strategies.

3. Can drug charges be expunged from my record?

Some drug charges can be expunged from your record under specific conditions. Contact Thompson & Hiller to discuss your eligibility for expungement in Columbia, SC.

4. How do I fight drug possession charges?

Challenging drug possession charges may involve questioning the legality of the search, seizure, or arrest procedures. Consult Thompson & Hiller for legal guidance and defense.

5. What is the difference between possession and trafficking?

Possession generally involves smaller quantities for personal use, while trafficking pertains to larger quantities intended for distribution. Thompson & Hiller can help you understand and defend against both types of charges.

6. How does South Carolina classify controlled substances?

South Carolina classifies controlled substances into Schedules, with Schedule I being the most restricted. For specific information tailored to your case, consult Thompson & Hiller.

7. Can drug charges affect my employment?

Yes, drug charges can have a significant impact on your current and future employment prospects. Rely on Thompson & Hiller for legal advice on mitigating these consequences.

8. What are the penalties for prescription drug abuse?

Prescription drug abuse can result in criminal charges similar to those for illegal substances, including fines and imprisonment. Contact Thompson & Hiller for legal defense.

9. What happens if I’m charged with drug offenses in a school zone?

Drug offenses committed in a school zone carry additional penalties in South Carolina. For a legal defense in such aggravated cases, trust Thompson & Hiller.

10. Can I avoid jail time for a drug charge?

Avoiding jail time depends on various factors like the severity of the charge and prior offenses. Thompson & Hiller can guide you through available defense options and alternative sentencing in Columbia, SC.

Domestic Violence FAQ

1. What constitutes domestic violence in South Carolina?

Domestic violence in South Carolina is broadly defined as causing physical harm or injury, or creating fear of such harm, to a household member. For legal experience on domestic violence cases in Columbia, SC, consult Thompson & Hiller.

2. What are the penalties for domestic violence charges?

Penalties for domestic violence charges in South Carolina vary based on the degree of the offense and can include fines, imprisonment, and mandatory counseling. Seek experienced representation from Thompson & Hiller for your case.

3. Can I drop domestic violence charges?

While victims may request to drop charges, the final decision rests with the prosecutor. Trust Thompson & Hiller to guide you through the complex legalities involved in domestic violence cases.

4. What is a restraining order and how do I get one?

A restraining order aims to protect victims by legally restricting the accused’s actions. To apply for or defend against a restraining order in Columbia, SC, consult Thompson & Hiller.

5. How does domestic violence affect child custody?

Domestic violence can significantly impact child custody arrangements, potentially resulting in loss or limitation of custody rights. Rely on Thompson & Hiller for legal advice and representation.

6. What are the defenses against domestic violence charges?

Defenses against domestic violence charges may include self-defense, false accusations, or lack of evidence. Consult Thompson & Hiller for personalized defense strategies tailored to your case.

7. What happens during a domestic violence court proceeding?

Domestic violence court proceedings typically involve arraignments, pre-trial hearings, and potentially a trial. Thompson & Hiller can navigate you through each stage of the legal process.

8. Can a domestic violence conviction be expunged?

Expunging a domestic violence conviction is difficult and depends on multiple factors, including the degree of the offense. Contact Thompson & Hiller to explore your options in Columbia, SC.

9. How can a domestic violence charge affect my employment?

A domestic violence conviction can have long-term repercussions on your employment and future job opportunities. Turn to Thompson & Hiller for advice on mitigating these career impacts.

10. What should I do immediately after a domestic violence arrest?

If arrested for domestic violence, it’s crucial to exercise your right to remain silent and seek legal representation. Contact Thompson & Hiller immediately for urgent,  competent legal guidance.