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McIntosh Law | Advocates for The Accused Since 1993

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Phone: 941-306-3230

Can you refuse field sobriety and chemical tests for DUI?

On Behalf of | Oct 14, 2022 | DUI

If the police pull you over on suspicion of driving under the influence, they will ask you to submit to field sobriety and chemical tests.

In short, you can refuse both, although the consequences are different for each.

Refusing a field sobriety test

One of the first things officers will do during a routine DUI stop is to ask you to perform a field sobriety test. These can include a simple request to walk along a straight line or follow a pen with your eyes without turning your head. The problem with these tests is that there is no legal standard for judging your performance. It is up to the officer’s discretion, and some field sobriety tests can be difficult when completely sober. You are within your rights to politely refuse these tests without legal consequence.

Refusing a chemical test

Whether you refuse a field sobriety test or not, the officers will likely ask you to submit to a chemical test. At the scene, they may offer a test that measures blood/alcohol levels through breath. You can also refuse this, and most legal representatives would advise you to refuse. Breath tests are notoriously unreliable. Certain prescription medications and even mouthwash can provide a false positive.

Refusing a chemical test will likely still result in a DUI arrest. Once the officer takes you down to the station, they will ask you to take a breath, urine or blood chemical test. Refusing a post-arrest request will have consequences according to Florida’s implied consent law.

Remember that arrest and conviction are not the same. You still have a court date to argue your case.

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