The Vastness of the Law

Understanding Your Rights When It Comes DUI Stops

The term "implied consent" is widely used when it comes to certain actions by law enforcement. For example, just by taking the wheel and driving, there is implied consent that you will comply with law enforcement when the blue lights appear in your rear-view mirror. Almost every aspect of a DUI stop involves some level of implied consent but that doesn't mean law enforcement has free-rein to do as they wish. If you have been arrested for DUI, a close look at the circumstances behind the stop and the stop itself is in order. Read on to find out more.

Implied Consent and Probable Cause

From the time law enforcement spots you until you are behind bars, the issue of probable cause is ever-present. For example, why were you pulled over in the first place? Law enforcement needs to show cause and prove that they had a good reason to make the stop. After the stop is made, a cascading series of perceptions may end up resulting in a search of your vehicle, a sobriety test, and an arrest. If your defense lawyer can show that no probable cause existed, the case against you falls apart. Take a look at some examples of probable cause to make the stop:

What Spurs Sobriety Tests?

Once you are stopped, law enforcement can rely on things like your breath, bloodshot eyes, an open container, etc. to prompt sobriety testing. Again, reasonable cause to perform roadside testing is necessary. Unfortunately, if they do administer tests, you can be arrested even if you are not legally drunk (.08 blood alcohol concentration). Many field sobriety tests can be seen as unfair, inaccurate, biased, and faulty.

Can You Refuse?

You cannot be forced to take field sobriety tests but refusing may place you in jail anyway. You can even lose your license for refusing and that revocation stands even if you, later on, prove you were not intoxicated. You do, however, have a very good chance of having your charges dropped or reduced because of issues with the sobriety tests performed in the field. You will need the help of a DUI defense attorney who can help you clear your name and avoid the worst of the punishment that could be coming your way. Contact a DUI attorney for more information.