Everyone knows at least one field sobriety test… count backwards; keep your eyes on the pen, one-leg stand and the portable breathalyzer (PBT). But to which of these tests MUST you submit if stopped for a DUI?
You may be surprised to know that you are not legally required to take any of these tests. InIndiana, driving is a privilege and not a right. This privilege requires something called “implied consent” and requires drivers to submit only to a certified chemical test if stopped for drinking and driving. Portable breathalyzers do not qualify as a certified chemical test and police officers may or may not inform you that the test is voluntary – nonetheless it is voluntary and only required if you are involved in an accident involving injury or death.
A certified chemical test may be given by blood or urine; however, it may also be by breath (only with a certified breathalyzer found in the police department.) The arresting officer has a 3 hour window in which to obtain the chemical test. Whether the test is by breath or bodily fluids is at the officer’s discretion. Refusal to submit to a certified chemical test will result in an additional one-year license suspension. Driving while intoxicated charges are very preventable and the first line of defense against an arrest, however, everyone should know the rules.