Most people don’t know what their rights are when they’re pulled over for a DUI. In fact, most people think they don’t have rights at all. Know that you DO have rights. There are many steps to be taken during this process, and you should know how to best avoid charges.
DUI Field Sobriety Tests
A field sobriety test in Atlanta consists of a variety of physical tests to decide if a person is under the influence of alcohol. In Georgia, there is no legal consequence to refusing a field sobriety test. A prosecutor may argue that you refused the test because you were not sober, but you can fight that with the help of a competent lawyer. Here is a list of what you may be required to do during a test:
- Touch the tip of your nose with your finger
- Balance while standing on one leg
- Horizontal eye movement test
- Walk-and-turn test
- Ability to count forwards and backwards
These tests are inconclusive and can lead to a false positive result. Here are reasons why you may not want to take a field sobriety test:
- Fatigue – If you are tired you may not be able to pass the test.
- Nervousness – You may be afraid during this process and fail the test.
- Poor Conditions – If the ground where you took the test on was uneven you may fail some of the tests.
- Weather – Any type of bad weather could result in inaccurate results.
All of these are reason enough to refuse to take a field sobriety test. Since there is no legal consequence of denying this test, it is in your best interest to decline.
Breathalyzer and Blood Tests
Unlike a field sobriety test where there is no consequence for refusal, you may have severe consequences when it comes to refusing to take a breath or blood test. If you refuse to take a blood alcohol test in Georgia, your license will be revoked for a year. During your case it can be brought against you as evidence that you refused to submit to a test.
If you believe you are sober and do not want to risk losing your license, you should submit to the test. However, you should choose to have a blood or urine test at a hospital (the cost will be on you) because it is more accurate and remains as physical evidence; a breathalyzer does not remain as evidence.
If you believe you are above the .08% blood alcohol count, you may want to refuse the test and submit to losing your license for a year. While losing your license may seem like a bad thing, if you are above the limit it might be the better alternative to submitting to physical evidence that you were in fact over the legal limit.
If you have been involved in a DUI in Alpharetta or Atlanta you should contact an attorney to help you with your case. DUIs are serious offenses and should be handled by a professional. Knowing your rights when you get pulled over can be helpful, but all hope is not lost if you didn’t know these things before. You should call the Law Office of Scott Miller today at 770-408-1001 for a consultation.