Getting caught for driving under the influence can be embarrassing, inconvenient, and, more importantly, costly.
Getting caught driving under the influence can be a traumatic experience. Primarily, driving under the influence, or DUI, refers to an offense of maneuvering a motor vehicle while being impaired by alcohol or drugs, which makes driving unsafe for the driver and their passengers. It’s a criminal offense that comes with long-term legal consequences, such as fines, fees, suspension or revocation of driver’s license, and possible jail time.
That said, it’s a must that you know what to do when you get arrested for a DUI offense in your state. When you know how to handle this situation, you can protect your rights and ensure the best possible outcome for your case.
So, if you’ve been caught engaging in this reckless behavior, below are the things you should do from the get-go:
Look for a Safe Place to Pull Over
When the police decide to pull you over for a DUI offense, it can mean that they’re already making observations on how you can pull over your vehicle. While you can’t stop them from observing your movements, the best thing you can do is to convince them that you’re not driving drunk by finding a safe place to pull over.
When you pull over in an unsafe location or drive erratically, the police might not hesitate to record these movements in the drunk or impaired column. So, be careful when pulling your motor vehicle to a safe place.
Contact a Lawyer
More than anything else, you should contact a dedicated lawyer to help you with your situation. Since getting caught with DUI is a legal matter, having someone who specializes in handling criminal laws is a must. This is especially true if the circumstances of your case are quite complicated.
For instance, if you’ve been caught DUI in connection with a car accident, you’ll have to consider whether there are injuries and other parties involved. Thus, if the other driver was also drunk and caused your injuries, then, you should work with a DUI traffic collision personal injury lawyer to recover compensation for the injuries.
Also, make sure to only hire a lawyer from a reputable law firm, like Cain Law Office, and who can aggressively fight for what you’re due.
Remain Calm and Be Polite
As mentioned, getting caught for DUI can be very frustrating. But, instead of panicking, try to remain calm and be polite as much as you can in the presence of authorities. The police officer will more likely arrest you for the offense if you’re insincere, rude, or hostile when talking to them.
Thus, if the officer requests you to step out of your car, you should be very friendly and helpful in a way that you’re willing to comply with their instructions. That way, you can prevent the real possibility of being charged and convicted with a DUI offense.
Avoid Answering Incriminating Questions
When you’re arrested for DUI, you have to undergo police questioning and are more likely to be exposed to potentially incriminating questions. In this kind of situation, you should be careful in answering questions from the police officer. While you can give your name, registration, license, and insurance information, you shouldn’t entertain questions that might establish your guilt, such as questions on whether you’re drinking or how much. By doing this, you can avoid incriminating yourself and making your situation worse.
To help you handle this scenario, find a lawyer who can explain to you what to do when dealing with police questioning. Also, if you’re in doubt on what to say, don’t lie and just say nothing. That way, nothing in your statements can be used against you in court.
Refuse Roadside Tests
When you get caught DUI, the police officer will ask you to undergo roadside tests, such as field sobriety and breath alcohol tests. Although these tests are voluntary, taking them might not be a good idea.
For example, field sobriety tests aren’t reliable indicators of intoxication, but they can be a way for a police officer to collect evidence against you. Moreover, a breath alcohol test is also a less reliable test to determine intoxication because there might be numerous ways to twist the result. Thus, if you don’t want to get convicted based on unscientific field sobriety and breath alcohol tests, refuse to undergo these tests when you’ve been arrested for DUI.
Getting caught for driving under the influence can be embarrassing, inconvenient, and, more importantly, costly. But, all you’ll need to do is to keep these things in mind so you’ll know what to do right after the incident. That way, you can also defend your rights and get yourself out of trouble quickly.