Do You Need to Take a Field Sobriety Test?

October 11, 2016 by Michael Poole in DUI  
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Should I take a Field Sobriety Test?

After reading question after question regarding field sobriety test and whether or not they are necessary to take, I took it upon myself to answer these questions here. In short, no. 

A field sobriety test is NOT REQUIRED if you get pulled over for a DUI, but keep in mind that evidence will be used against you if your case goes to trial.

Should I take the Breath or Blood Test?

If you are arrested for a DUI (California DUI Types, VC 23152), California’s “implied consent” law states that if you are lawfully arrested by an officer who has probable cause to believe that you have been driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, then you consent to taking a chemical test of your blood, breath, or urine sample.

The test must be taken at the time of your arrest, and the officer should give you the choice between a blood or breath test. If neither are available, then a urine test will be offered. If you refuse any of these, then your drivers license will likely be suspended for at least a year.

Penalties for Refusing Breath or Blood Test

The penalties for refusing to take a blood, breath, or urine test begin with a one-year suspension of your license in the State of California. Two-year suspension if this is your second refusal, or if you already had a reckless-driving or DUI conviction within the last ten years. Three-year suspension for your third refusal or if you have had more than one reckless-driving or DUI conviction within ten years. The fine is the same every time: $125.

The penalties for refusing to submit to a chemical test are found in the California Vehicle Code Sections 13353 and 14905.

Conclusion to Take a Field Sobriety Test

1. Field Sobriety Tests are tricky and are ‘not required’. It is advised to refuse it.

2. Breath, Blood or Urine Tests are ‘required’. It is advised to comply.

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