Getting pulled over is always going to be one of the most stressful and tense situations for any driver. However, a speeding violation is different from a Driving While Intoxicated or DWI charge.
If you have been charged with DWI, it can have a severe and lasting negative effect on all aspects of your life. In today’s post, we’ll share some essential points to remember if you get a DWI charge.
You’ve Been Charged with DWI. What Now?
When you’ve been pulled over by a traffic officer, prepare to be asked with if you are intoxicated or have been drinking. No matter what the situation is, remember to be polite and respectful.
If you are asked to vacate your car, which is a likely scenario, simply oblige. Answer all the questions you’ve been asked, and don’t try to be confrontational.
While getting pulled over can be terrifying, it’s essential that you don’t offend the officers. Be calm as much as possible.
Have All Important Information Prepared
When you are pulled over for violating traffic rules, an officer will ask for our license, registration, and insurance information.
It’s essential to have all driving-related documents and information ready, and up to date, so you can easily hand them to the traffic officer.
Officers are used to nervous drivers whenever they pull them over. However, it would be best if you still tried to remain calm and composed when giving your information. Officers are trained to observe traffic violators when they pull drivers over.
Should You Take a Field Sobriety Test?
To help conclude if you are intoxicated or not, you may be asked to take a field sobriety test.
These tests typically comprise the horizontal gaze nystagmus test (HGN test), the one-leg stand test, and the walk-and-turn test.
Under the law, you are not obligated to participate in these tests. However, the arresting officer may take your refusal to mean that you may be guilty and cause to arrest you.
Also, taking the field sobriety test and failing them will obviously be used as evidence for your arrest and conviction.
An arresting officer may also ask you to submit to a blood, breath, and urine test. These tests check your blood alcohol level. Refusing to take these tests may result in a license suspension for 180 days – only if it’s your first refusal.
Subsequent denials of the test may also cause your license to be suspended for up to 2 years each time.
If proven guilty and you’re convicted, you will lose the privilege to drive, and your license will be suspended entirely.
It’s essential to think about the severe consequences of field sobriety tests – especially if you know that there are drugs and alcohol in your system.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent
You most likely have heard that line in movies or TV shows; it’s definitely true in real life, too.
If you are pulled over, and the officer concludes that you are intoxicated, you’ll have a DWI charge and get arrested.
Aside from giving your complete name, address, and date of birth, you are not legally obligated to say anything else.
You do have the right to remain silent when arrested – and you should.
Whatever it is you say before, during, and after the arrest may be used against you. Staying silent will be in your favor. The only other person you should communicate with after your arrest is your attorney.
Consult with a DWI Attorney to Help with Your DWI Charge
When you are charged with DWI, your first phone call should be to a DWI attorney. The sooner you get in touch with one, the sooner you can have help building your defense plan.