Am I required to perform DUI tests if police ask?

If the police have never pulled you over on suspicion of drunk driving before, you may not know how you should react or behave if this happens. Everyone who is driving is liable to make some mistakes on the road that a police officer may misinterpret as a sign of driving while impaired.

You may never actively plan to get behind the wheel after you have had too much to drink, but sometimes it can happen if you underestimate how much you have had to drink or you do not have a designated driver. While it is never a good idea to drive after you have had too much to drink, you should prepare yourself for the particular tests and questions a police officer may ask of you if you are ever pulled over on suspicion of drunk or impaired driving.

The breathalyzer test

Illinois was among the first states in the country to implement a law making 0.08 the legal limit for blood alcohol content. Now that is the federal limit across the country. One way police try to estimate your blood alcohol content, or BAC, is through a breathalyzer test. Police may ask you to blow into a tube after they pull you over on suspicion of drunk driving. You do not have to perform this test. It is your right to refuse, especially if you are not driving drunk or impaired.

Field sobriety tests

Other tests police may ask you to perform are subtler than the breathalyzer test. For example, the officer may make a simple request for you to follow the movement of his or her finger with your eyes. Officers use even these subtler tests to provide evidence for their assumption or suspicion that you are a drunk driver. You can refuse these tests as well. It is within your rights to do so. If the police arrest you, your refusal to perform these tests can help your case because you have a constitutional right for an attorney’s representation. Your attorney can determine the circumstances of your case and help build a strategic defense against your DUI charges.