I Wasn’t Read My Rights – Will DUI Charges Stick?

DUI charges are serious and a conviction can have long-lasting penalties. If you have been charged with DUI you will need to properly defend yourself. Many people think that because they weren’t read their rights the DUI charges will automatically be dropped. While law enforcement likely did make some mistakes in your arrest, the charges won’t necessarily be dropped. In fact, a great many cases where arrests were seemingly mishandled proceed to court and end in conviction. If you feel your case was handled inappropriately the best thing to do is to immediately consult with an experienced DUI lawyer. It’s important to remember that even if some minor problems occurred with your arrest the facts of the case will dictate whether the case proceeds or not.

First Hearing

The first hearing, also known as the arraignment, is where the official charges against you are presented by a judge. This is a very important hearing because if you have several charges pending it may be possible to mitigate them. This can’t be done alone, however. You’ll need to engage the assistance of a highly qualified lawyer who works in the area of DUI on a daily basis. Your lawyer will immediately review your arrest and the charges against you to determine the best way to proceed. The attorney may be successful at getting some of the charges dropped or reduced. Additionally, the hearing is where your bail will be set. An attorney will work vigorously to try to get your bail removed or at the very least, lowered. If you are unable to pay for bail it is possible to seek help through a local bail-bondsman.

Problems with the Arrest

There are often problems that occur during a vehicle stop and subsequent arrest. You should try to recount exactly what happened so that your lawyer can determine whether or not the problems were significant in your case. Most DUI arrests occur through a traffic stop. The officer may ask you to step out of the car and perform some basic field sobriety tests. These may include such things as walking a straight line or reciting the alphabet. These types of tests are performed simply for the purpose of the police making a determination as to your DUI status. If the police officer decides that you were indeed driving impaired he may request that you take a breath, urine, or blood test. These tests will take a measurement of your blood alcohol content (BAC). In Florida, if your BAC is above 0.08% you are considered to be DUI.

Failure to Submit to Testing

Drivers in the state of Florida are required to submit to testing if requested by a member of law enforcement. The implied consent law is one that most people don’t know about until after they have been arrested for DUI. In order to obtain your driver’s license you agree to this testing if requested. Failure to submit to the tests is itself against the law and you will be subject to charges and penalties that include an automatic suspension of your driver’s license. Further, failure to take the test can be used against you in your DUI court case. If asked to submit to testing it is best to consult with your attorney before doing so. Anytime there were mistakes made during your arrest process you need to discuss them with your lawyer. Your DUI lawyer will do everything possible to assist you throughout the difficult process of defending your DUI charges.