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Should I Refuse a Breath or Blood Test If Pulled Over By Police For DUI?

It can be a difficult and overwhelming experience if you are pulled over by the police on suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI). If the officer requests a breath or blood test, understanding your rights is essential - including whether you should refuse to take either test.

What is a DUI Arrest?

A DUI arrest occurs when a person is pulled over by the police and suspected of driving under the influence. Depending on your state's statutes, this may be called a "driving while intoxicated" (DWI) or an "operating while intoxicated" (OWI). During this encounter, the officer likely will ask you to perform field sobriety tests, followed by asking you to submit to a breath or blood test.

What Are the Consequences of Refusing a Breath or Blood Test?

If you refuse a breath or blood test, you may face administrative penalties such as license suspension by your state's department of motor vehicles, even if the criminal charges are ultimately dismissed. It is important to note that some states have an implied consent law, which requires you to submit to a breath or blood testing if asked by a police officer. If you refuse, you will be subject to the penalty regardless of the outcome of your case.

Characteristics of an Unlawful DUI Stop by Police.

There are certain criteria police must meet in order to lawfully pull you over and ask for a breath or blood test. These include the police officer having reasonable suspicion that you have committed a crime (e.g., erratic driving, smell of alcohol on breath), or having probable cause to believe you are intoxicated due to visible indicators (e.g., slurred speech, red eyes). If the officer does not have reasonable suspicion or probable cause, then any evidence obtained from the DUI stop would be considered invalid and inadmissible in court.

Should I Refuse a Breath or Blood test if Pulled Over by Police?

Ultimately, it is your decision whether or not to take the breath or blood test if pulled over for by police for DUI. However, it is important to know that refusal of either test may have fines and other punishments. Be sure to check with an attorney familiar with DUI laws in your state for more information about the specific consequences of refusing a breath or blood test.

What To Do After Being Arrested for DUI.

Once you are arrested for DUI, it's important to get legal assistance as soon as possible. An experienced criminal attorney will be able to guide you through the process and ensure that your rights are being upheld. They can also help you understand the potential penalties of a DUI conviction and the range of legal defenses available to you.

What Happens After An Arrest?