DEREK A. PATRIN has been practicing in the area of DWI defense since 2001. In that timeframe, he has handled hundreds of DWI cases.
His work in DWI defense has been recognized by Minnesota Law & Politics, who named Derek a “Rising Star” six times between 2005-2013. In 2014, he was recognized as a “Super Lawyer” in the area of DWI/DUI defense by the same publication. His victory in the Minnesota Court of Appeals DWI license revocation case Jones v. Commissioner of Public Safety was featured in a cover story of Minnesota Lawyer in 2005, and he was one of the lead attorneys representing all Minnesota drivers in the Intoxilyzer 5000EN “Source Code” litigation from 2009-2012. He has argued numerous DWI cases to the Minnesota Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, and has been interviewed by local newspapers, radio stations, and TV stations for his work in DWI cases.
Derek graduated cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1998 and initially worked for the large downtown Minneapolis law firm of Rider, Bennett, Egan & Arundel. After nearly two years with that firm, Derek got tired of defending large corporations and insurance companies against “the little guy,” so he left. Eventually, Derek joined the DWI defense firm of Gerald Miller & Associates, where he handled hundreds of DWI cases. In 2005, he and fellow DWI defense attorney Ethan Meaney formed their own partnership dedicated solely to representing individuals facing DWI, DUI and Test Refusal charges in Minnesota. Derek and Ethan are now known as the “DWI Guys” of Minnesota.
Derek Explains: “In law school, I never imagined I would end up defending individuals in criminal cases, but since I started doing this in 2001, I have never been happier. It gives me a tremendous sense of pride and accomplishment when I help a person who really needs it to keep their job, restore family relationships, and get any help they might need.
“I truly have an opportunity to make a big difference in people’s lives when no one else wants to defend or help them. Many of my clients have become good friends during my representation of them, which has also enriched my career.
“While no one is in favor of drinking and driving, the penalties for doing so have gotten way too harsh, especially for people who are not habitual offenders. I regard myself as a defender of drivers who have become victims of a state that callously shaves away their constitutional rights year after year while deliberately subjecting them to a system that works to deny them of their remaining rights and defenses.”
- Jones v. Commissioner of Public Safety, 660 N.W.2d 472 (Minn. App. 2003)
- State v. Brunner (Underdahl), 767 N.W.2d 677 (Minn. 2009) (PDF)