Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

Do I have to take a sobriety test if I'm pulled over?

America is a free country, and every American citizen has rights that they can exercise if necessary. Many people are familiar with their right to remain silent, for example, if they are charged with a crime. We have all heard in countless movies and shows how anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law, and this is true. However, there are some things you cannot refuse without suffering legal penalties.

Every state in the country, including Louisiana, has what are known as implied consent laws. An implied consent law is the idea that by making use of state funded roads, drivers are consenting to DUI testing in exchange for the privilege of driving on said roads. This means that if a law enforcement official pulls you over and has reasonable suspicion that you are intoxicated, you must consent to a field sobriety test or suffer consequences such as license suspension.

An important distinction to make here is that an officer must have reasonable suspicions that you are intoxicated in order for implied consent to be valid. Police cannot simply throw out random sobriety tests with the hope of catching a drunk driver. However, refusing to comply with an officer of the law is inadvisable, so you may want to submit to the test and try to dispute its validity in court.

If you are charged with drunk driving and you failed a field sobriety test, it is highly recommended that you speak with an attorney about your defense. With legal assistance, you can raise suspicion as to whether the officer had probable cause to pull you over and ask you to submit to a field sobriety test. Enlisting the aid of an attorney is the best option to defend yourself against drunk driving charges.

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Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

8048 One Calais Avenue | Suite A | Baton Rouge, LA 70809-3483 | Phone: 225-250-1812 | Fax: 225-769-0195 | Baton Rouge Criminal Law Office