Are Sobriety Tests Mandatory?

Whether you have been accused of driving under the influence of alcohol or you just are concerned for the future, it is important to know what your rights are. And when it comes to your legal rights surrounding DUIs, there is no bigger question than whether taking a sobriety test is required. It is very important to know what your rights are prior to being in that situation, because once you are pulled over under suspicion of a DUI it is already too late. After reading this guide, you will know everything you need to know if you are ever pulled over for a DUI.

The Sobriety Test

In nearly all situations, you are not required to take a sobriety test. This includes all kinds of sobriety tests, include:

  • The breathalyzer
  • Urine test
  • Blood test
  • Physical or mental challenges

Not only are you not required to take a sobriety test, it is in your best interest not to. There are only two results of a sobriety test. One is that it proves you are driving while illegally impaired, and the other result is that it proves nothing. It is impossible for a sobriety test to prove your innocence, even though it can easily prove your guilt.

Another aspect many people do not realize is that sobriety tests are very subjective. It is up to the officer to interpret the results of the test. Even if you are not above the legal limit, the officer simply needs to decide if you are too impaired to drive safely. That is the only requirement to receive a DUI.

When A Sobriety Test Is Required

There are exactly three situations where you may be legally required to take a sobriety test. These situations are:

  • You are under the legal drinking age.
  • You are currently on probation for a DUI.
  • You are already under arrest.

The first two situations are pretty straightforward to understand. The third, however, raises a lot of questions. You are still required to take a sobriety test, even if you are arrested for an unrelated reason. On the other hand, if you are arrested for driving impaired, the officer may then require you to take a sobriety test as extra proof for use in the court. However, the officer can only make the initial arrest if he or she has proof. If you were arrested without proof, the subsequent sobriety test results cannot be used to convict you and the case will almost certainly be thrown out. If this has happened to you, an attorney can help you.

Source: Criminal Defense Lawyer Denver, CO, Richard J. Banta, P.C.

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