Busted for DUI! 10 Things You Must Know at a DUI Stop

If you get pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, there are things you must know in order to protect your rights and help bring about the best results for yourself. These are things a good DUI attorney would tell you to do, and they are based on federal DUI laws and state DUI laws.

In this Drunk Drivers Rights article, we will help you understand what you should do at a DUI checkpoint.

Here are 10 things you must know during a DUI stop.

1. Roll your window down but do not open your door. A police officer will view an open door as a threatening situation and it will get things started on the wrong foot. Don’t get out of your vehicle unless requested to.

2. Have your driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance ready. This will show that you are in control of your faculties and understand what is going on.

3. Remain calm, polite and courteous. Whether or not you are tested for DUI will have a lot to do with your behavior and attitude. If you haven’t touched a drop, go ahead and be rude if you want to. Otherwise, be respectful.

4. Don’t answer certain questions such as, “Do you know why I stopped you?” Simply say, “No.” The police officer is looking for you to give yourself away. If he or she asks you where you’ve been and what you’ve been doing, simply tell them that you’d rather not say. You are under no obligation to answer such questions.

5. Don’t talk too much or too fast. Answer questions in short, though not curt or rude, sentences. The more you talk, and the faster you talk, the more likely you are to slur words or otherwise sound like you’ve been drinking.

6. Don’t admit to drinking. If asked, “Have you been drinking?” or “How much have you been drinking,” a DUI defense attorney would suggest that you politely tell the officer that you’d rather not answer. Saying, “a few beers” is an admission that you were drinking. Saying, “I forgot” sounds like you’ve had too much to drink. If you haven’t been drinking at all, go ahead and let them so, since you have no consequences to be concerned about.

7. Only provide the information requested. Don’t give details you weren’t asked about. You’ll end up saying more than you should, and as they say, it might be used against you.

8. Decline to submit to field sobriety tests unless you are very confident you are not impaired. Almost every DUI attorney recommends that you don’t take them under any circumstances. For a list of possible field sobriety tests, or FSTs, see a good glossary of DUI terms.

9. Decline a breathalyzer test at the scene unless you are sure that have not been drinking enough to fail a test. Again, DUI lawyers suggest that you do not take a test. They believe that the best defense is to make the police arrest you and give you a blood test and then fight the results of the blood test in court. Refusing the other tests gives law enforcement less evidence against you.

10. If given the choice of a breath or blood test after an arrest, take the breath test. Federal and state DUI laws differ, but you must take one of the other in most states. Refusing to take any tests during the process will result in the stiffest fines and penalties. They’ll assume the worst and throw the book at you. The strategy behind taking a breath test, according to top DUI lawyers, is that a breath test can be discredited in front of a jury more easily than a blood test.

While federal and state laws vary, these tips should serve you well if stopped for a possible DUI arrest anywhere in the country.