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Do I have to take the field sobriety tests if I’m pulled over in Ohio?

On Behalf of | Jul 27, 2022 | Criminal Defense

Ohio is a great place to drive. There are large swaths of open roads, and you can also get to places quickly. As someone who drives regularly, you know that there are areas where the cops patrol regularly, and in those areas, you do your best to follow the rules and avoid a traffic stop.

When you got pulled over recently you weren’t sure why. The officer initially claimed that you had made an error, and then they asked you to take a Breathalyzer test. They also asked if you’d be willing to take field sobriety tests.

Do you have to take these tests? What will happen if you don’t? Truthfully, you have a right to refuse both the Portable Breathalyzer Test, or PBT, and the field sobriety tests in Ohio. There is no penalty for refusing a field sobriety test. With a Breathalyzer test, there is a risk that you could be penalized if you refuse, however. Refusing the PBT and additional breath, blood or urine testing at the police station could lead to the loss of your license and other penalties.

What should you do if you want to refuse the field sobriety tests?

If you don’t want to take the field sobriety tests, you should let the officer know that you aren’t interesting in doing those. There is no law requiring you to complete these tests, and you should not be penalized for refusing them.

You should refuse to take field sobriety tests in most cases, too, because the last thing you want to do is to give the arresting officer any additional evidence of impairment. Fortunately, you have the right to refuse these tests. If you do end up taking them, you can also challenge those tests, since officers need to be trained to administer them and they are not 100% accurate.

You deserve an opportunity to fight back against a DUI

A DUI is serious business, but know that you may be able to defend against it. Getting to know your rights now could help you avoid making mistakes that hurt your chances of a strong defense.