Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious crime in most states throughout the U.S., and South Carolina is no different. Like many states, South Carolina has a law of implied consent, which means that you automatically consent to taking a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test during a traffic stop. Besides implied consent, there are a few things you should know about DUI in order to protect your rights.
The Do's of DUI
- Remain calm. A traffic stop does not have to result in a DUI charge. To make an arrest, officers must have probable cause. Do not raise suspicion by acting nervous or threatening.
- Be compliant. Listen carefully to the officer and follow his or her instructions. If you're unsure about what the officer is saying or whether you are required by law to consent to something, ask.
- Consider your options in a BAC test. According to the law of implied consent, you may automatically have your license suspended if you refuse to submit to a BAC test. Depending on your situation, submitting or refusing may be a reasonable choice. Consider your each in your circumstance.
- If you are placed under arrest, cooperate. You cannot argue your way out of a police arrest. Cooperating cannot harm your case.
- After being arrested, ask to speak with your attorney. Even if the officer does not advise you, remember that you have the right to remain silent and to have your attorney present.
The Don'ts of DUI
- Do not volunteer information. Anything you say during a traffic stop or after an arrest can be used against you, especially information that incriminates you. Unless information or an action is required by law, do not volunteer it to the officer. If you are unsure, ask the officer for clarification.
- Do not act suspiciously or threateningly. Suspicious and threatening behavior may give officers probable cause to make an arrest or request a roadside sobriety test.
- Do not jeopardize your safety. If a situation appears dangerous or makes you uncomfortable, ask to speak to the officer's supervisor or to follow the officer to the police station.
You may need our help!
Even if you have been armed with working knowledge of DUI law and procedures, you may still need help with a legal issue involving DUI charges. Retain an experienced defense lawyer to help you resolve your issues. At The Laubshire Law Firm, LLC, our Columbia DUI defense attorneys have years of experience as former DUI prosecutors and police officers. Our firm offers valuable skills and resources to help clients reach positive results in their cases. Call our office to consult our South Carolina lawyers today!