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Facts & Questions



What should I do if stopped by the police for DUI?

Many people wonder what their rights are when the authorities contact them. While every situation calls for individual advice, and laws vary from state to state, we suggest the following general guidelines (subject to our disclaimer):
If you are driving and are stopped by the police, you do not need to tell them anything and you should not. As we often hear in the movies - you have the right to remain silent and anything you say can and will be used against you. Why would you say anything at all if you know it will be used against you? The answer is simple - in most cases you should not say anything when a police officer is investigating you for DUI. If the police ask you if you have something illegal in the vehicle, tell them you do not wish to answer and also tell them you want to talk to your attorney immediately. If you have a mobile phone, call 1-800-DUI-ATTORNEY from the side of the road.

You also do not need to give the police permission to search your vehicle or your home. You have the right to maintain your privacy. Who wants a stranger digging through their glove compartment or their closets? No one. So, if a police officer asks you if he or she can search your vehicle or home, tell them they do not have your permission. Also tell them you want to talk to your attorney immediately and call us.

Even if the police tell you it will be easier on you if you cooperate and answer their questions, you generally should no. The police often try to convince someone to trust them when they are trying to gather evidence to be used to CONVICT that person of a crime. Nothing can substitute for sound legal advice should you end up face to face with the police. Call us immediately if you do come into contact with police, FBI, border authorities, DEA, or any other government agent.

You should also remember to be polite and physically cooperative with police officers at all times. If the officer arrests you, do not resist or try to get away. This will just make things worse. Do not speak to the officer, do not answer any questions, and ask to speak to your attorney at 1-800-DUI-ATTORNEY immediately. While we all know we have the "right to remain silent," most people do not know they have "the right to an attorney at any time." Know your rights and take advantage of them.

Should I take a blood or breath test?

The laws vary tremendously from state to state. In some states, you can refuse a breath test with no adverse consequences. In other states, refusing can dramatically increase your license suspension and/or jail sentence. In some states, refusing to take a test can be a crime. Finally, in some states you cannot refuse a breath or blood test. Because each situation is unique, and you have the right to contact an attorney before deciding what to do, you should always contact an attorney when you are faced with this difficult decision. Feel free to call 1-800-DUI-ATTORNEY at any time.

Do I need an attorney?

Absolutely. An attorney will defend your rights. Attorneys are well trained advocates who can usually secure a much better result for you than you could by yourself. They will look for errors committed in your case, including illegal stops, illegal arrests, illegal searches, improper breath test warnings, and problems with the workings of the breath or blood test itself. The complex issues in DUI cases involve the constitution, complicated statutes, chemistry and computer science. You cannot possibly learn everything you need to know to counter experienced, professional prosecutors whose job is to convict you. And, in some states, having an attorney can keep you from having to go to numerous court hearings. In all states, an experienced DUI attorney will guide you through the complicated court process. Call 1-800-DUI-ATTORNEY to locate a DUI attorney near you.

How much will an attorney cost?

The answer to this question will depend on the experience of the attorney you contact and the complexity of your case. Most of our attorneys will offer you a free initial consultation, either over the phone or in person. They will provide you with a clear estimate of how much it will cost to defend your case, and many accept payment arrangements and credit cards.

What will happen to me if I am convicted of DUI?

The sentencing laws very dramatically from state to state. Most states have minimum amounts of jail time and long license suspensions for persons convicted of DUI. Call 1-800-DUI-ATTORNEY to locate an attorney who can protect your rights and help you avoid these consequences.


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