To ensure an open and balanced approach, care must be taken to include representatives of the defense bar, particularly those who specialize in the defense of impaired drivers. Care must also be taken to avoid discussion of the cases of individual hardcore drunk driving defendants who may have cases pending before the judge.

The justification for including defense counsel in the multi-disciplinary approach extends beyond the obvious ethical need for openness and balance. Many issues that relate to the efficient disposition of hardcore drunk driving cases are those that relate to the discovery process. Removing impediments that delay or complicate the discovery process assists the defense bar in assessing and discussing the prosecution’s case with their clients, resulting in earlier plea changes or speedier trials. Defense buy-in is essential to the implementation of DWI/Drug Courts.