Know Your Legal Rights

Everyone should be informed of their legal rights, even if they have not been confronted by a DUI-DWI investigation. Drivers who do not know their legal rights risk helping the officer gather evidence against them, if being investigated for drunk or impaired driving.

Even if you do not feel impaired, if you drink and drive you could be arrested and charged with a DUI-DWI. The majority of drivers do not realize how much alcohol puts their blood alcohol content over the legal limit. Moreover, drivers are not always aware when they become “impaired.” It is also important to note that if a driver’s BAC is under the legal limit, they can still be arrested if a law enforcement officer believes the driver is impaired due to drug or alcohol consumption. If you are stopped by an officer, you should know your legal rights.

    • You have the right to remain silent. Anything you do or say could be used against you in court. You do not have to help the police officer collect evidence against you. You should be polite, but you should not answer any questions regarding the consumption of drugs and/or alcohol, including where or when consumption may have occurred. Drivers are not obligated to give an officer any additional outside of the information on your license. Any admission to drinking only provides the officer a reason to pursue a DUI-DWI investigation.
    • You do not have to perform any field sobriety evaluations. Roadside agility evaluations, which could include the walk and turn, one leg stand, or HGN, are voluntary. Furthermore, these tests are designed for the driver to fail and can be used to incriminate you in court.
    • Portable breath tests are voluntary. These are typically performed at roadside and cannot be used to prove impairment, but it can be used as supporting evidence for a DUI-DWI arrest.
    • Refusing a state-administered chemical testing of your BAC can result in minimum mandatory penalties.
    • An officer cannot search your vehicle without your permission or without reasonable cause

If you have been charged with drunk or impaired driving, contact an experienced DUI attorney who knows how to fight to protect your legal rights. Don’t simply plead guilty. Learn how your charges can be reduced, or even dismissed. Contact at 1-855-350-TEAM or fill out a free, no obligation case evaluation form and speak to an expert criminal defense lawyer today.

Copyright 2015. William C. Head. All Rights Reserved.