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If cops pull you over for DUI this holiday, can you refuse tests?

It is such a common and important legal question that criminal defense lawyers hear from their clients: "Did I screw up when the officer pulled me over and I did what he wanted?"

The trouble is it would be best for all drivers to have known the answer to that question before  or during a traffic stop. While most Memphis drivers know that being intoxicated while driving can get them in trouble, many do not understand that refusing to submit to a blood alcohol test can get them into trouble, too.

Implied consent laws play a role in DUI cases here in Tennessee and across the U.S. The basic concept is that if you have been arrested due to probable cause for suspicion of impaired driving, the state expects that you will comply with a test of your blood alcohol content. These tests can be via urine, breath and/or a blood sample.

If you've been arrested but refuse to consent to BAC tests, the minimum consequence is you would lose your driver's license for one year. We call it a "minimum" consequence, but it is surely not minimal in how that could impact your life. Driving allows people to get to work to support themselves and their families. Driving is a privilege worth protecting. 

With the holiday season here, so is the reality that police are out on the roads in full force, looking for supposedly drunk drivers. Many people will find themselves in the spot of needing to protect their freedoms following DUI allegations. The dedication of an aggressive drunk driving defense lawyer will go a long way in providing that protection.

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Jack P. Sherman, Attorney at Law
200 Jefferson Ave.
Suite 700
Memphis, TN 38103

Phone: 901-646-4270
Phone: 901-233-3474
Fax: 901-522-1398
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