Do I have to take a roadside test for DUI? 55 Answers as of May 30, 2013

Do I have to do roadside tests like walking a in a straight line, balancing on one foot, or touching my nose? If I’m pulled over for DUI?

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Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC
Cornish, Crowley, Rockafellow, & Sartz, PLLC | Jacob Peter Sartz IV
I'd recommend you retain a lawyer to help you or you ask the court for legal counsel.You have a right to counsel. Don't be afraid to exercise that right. Generally, no, you don't have to participate in the field sobriety tests, but refusing could result in administrative sanctions in some situations. I'd recommend you have an experienced OUI attorney review your file if you have that issue.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 6/21/2012
Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC
Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC | Thomas A. Medford, Jr.
You can refuse to take the roadside test however the police officer can still decide to charge you based on the other evidence at hand.
Answer Applies to: District of Columbia
Replied: 4/2/2012
Robert Mortland
Robert Mortland | Law Office of Robert Mortland
You do not have to submit to the field sobriety tests but you must submit to a chemical test.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 3/26/2012
Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
No one can make you do those tests and if you refuse the Commonwealth cannot use that as evidence against you. If you were stopped and refused to take the Field Sobriety Tests, a police officer would likely arrest you for the OUI. However, it would be a very difficult case to prove against you without that evidence.
Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
Replied: 3/21/2012
Law Office of Phillip Weiser
Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
No you can refuse to take the tests.
Answer Applies to: Kansas
Replied: 3/16/2012
    Law Office of Michael R. Garber
    Law Office of Michael R. Garber | Michael R. Garber
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    You do not have to take the roadside sobriety test. You will almost certainly be arrested if you do not take the test.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
    Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
    No, you have an absolute right to refuse the Field Sobriety Test. The officer will tell you that if you don't he will arrest you, but know this, as soon as an officer makes such a statement, he has just decided to arrest you no matter what, so giving the FST or denying the FST, you are going to be arrested on suspicion of DWI. Why give the evidence, refuse it and at least have a better fighting chance at trial.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    No but they can just arrest you if they think you are intoxicated and these tests are to weed out people who are not intoxicated.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    Harrison & Harrison
    Harrison & Harrison | Samuel Harrison
    No, you do not have to take the roadside tests. These are called field sobriety tests and they are entirely voluntary. If the officer arrests you for DUI and asks that you take the "official" test, Georgia law allows you to refuse, but your license will usually be suspended for 12 months.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
    All you have to take upon the penalty of losing your driving privilege is the chemical test after you are arrested if you are arrested.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    You do not have to take a roadside test for DUI. However, this does not guarantee that you will not be charged for the crime.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/15/2012
    The Law Firm of David Jolly
    The Law Firm of David Jolly | David Jolly
    You do not have to take any roadside tests. All field sobriety tests (Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, walk and turn, and one leg stand) are "voluntary" and you must be advised as such. Additionally, the portable breath test at the side of the road is also voluntary. Frankly, we attorneys advise that you do no field sobriety test and do not give a breath test at the side of the road.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Offices of Eric J. Bell | Eric J. Bell
    No, you have the right to refuse to take the field sobriety tests.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    No, you can refuse any or all tests, including the FSTs.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Richard Southard
    Law Office of Richard Southard | Richard C Southard
    You don't have to take it but the prosecutor will argue that your failure to take it is evidence of your guilt. He was afraid to take it because he knew he would fail.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    No. You do not have to do that.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady | Kevin O'Grady
    You do not have to take the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (eye) test, you do NOT have to perform the walk and turn, you do not have to perform the one leg stand, and you do not have to provide a field preliminary breath sample. If the officer meets certain prerequisites you may demand that you provide a breath or blood, or even urine sample, under appropriate circumstances, and if you do not you can face administrative, and in Hawaii, even criminal penalties for failure to do so.
    Answer Applies to: Hawaii
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Anderson Law Office
    Anderson Law Office | Scott L. Anderson
    No, but you must comply with alcohol testing after an officer requests you do after reading the implied consent advisory.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    No, but you might end up being arrested anyway.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    No. However, it will increase the likelihood that you may be arrested. I generally advise my clients not to submit to the road side tests. They are purely voluntary. Please distinguish this from the breath test. You can refuse the breath test, however, if you do so, the DOL will suspend your license for at least one year, even if you are not convicted of the DUI. Hire an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law
    Mark Thiessen, Attorney at Law | Mark Thiessen
    Absolutely not. No none can make you do any tests.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Michael Morgan, l.L.C.
    Law Office of Michael Morgan, l.L.C. | Michael Morgan
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Absolutely not. Those tests are completely volunatry and you should never do them, because they are designed so that even a sober person will fail.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Neal L. Weinstein
    Law Office of Neal L. Weinstein | Neal L. Weinstein
    NO. Those tests are all voluntary, but the cops will not tell you that. Nor are your required to answer any questions other than identify yourself. The simplest way to avoid the tests is tell him that your lawyer said not to take them and not to talk to him. If arrested, you should take the breathalyzer or you will face jail, extra suspension, and larger fines. All depends upon the circumstances. If arrested and you are tested at less than a 0.08 and are let go with no charges filed, file a written complaint against the cop.
    Answer Applies to: Maine
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    The Law Offices of Harold L. Wallin | Harold L. Wallin
    No, you can refuse them. The officer may threaten you with arrest if you don't do them (and may follow through on his threats), but your case will be stronger if you politely refuse field tests.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    Yes, if requested by law enforcement. That is standard procedure called a field sobriety test?.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law
    Charles M. Schiff, Attorney at Law | Charles M. Schiff
    You are not obligated to submit to the tests described in your email. You should be aware, however, that refusal to submit will be considered probable cause for arrest for DUI and a resulting request for a test of your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). If you think that arrest is likely anyway, refusal to submit to roadside testing may make the state's case more difficult. Remember, however, refusal to submit to the testing of your blood alcohol content is a separate crime in Minnesota and is rarely advisable.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    H. Scott Basham, Attorney at Law, P.C. | H. Scott Basham
    If you refuse to submit to roadside testing, your license can be administratively suspended for a year by the Department of Driver Services under the "implied consent" law.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Ellman and Ellman PC
    Ellman and Ellman PC | Kevin Ellmann
    You will almost certainly be asked to take such tests, but you do not have to take them and I would advise against it. If, however, you are arrested and asked to take a blood or breath test, refusal of that test will result in a one year revocation of your driver's license so I would hesitate to advise you to refuse that.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum | Edward J. Blum
    No. And you shouldn't. Unless you are under 21 or on probation. The only test you have to do is blood or breath after arrest.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    You do not have to, and if you have been drinking and feel that you cannot do it, you should not. But, if you do not, you will be arrested for DWI no doubt. It is tough to give advice on this as it really depends on the circumstances - and only you will know at the time. Be aware that you are being recorded- by physically & anything that you say.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Furlong & Drewniak PLLC
    Furlong & Drewniak PLLC | Thaddeus Furlong, Esq.
    NO. It is usually better never to take any field sobriety tests as they are optional and will likely be used against you. Do not do any field tests. Especially do not take the field PBT (portable breath test) on the side of the highway. It's a uncalibrated breath device that could hurt you and cause your arrest, even if you passed the other tests. As a former police officer I know people can pass the field tests but fail the PBT blow in the field. Do none of it.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Palumbo and Kosofsky
    Palumbo and Kosofsky | Michael Palumbo
    No.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    The Short Law Group, P.C.
    The Short Law Group, P.C. | Shawn Kollie
    No you do not have to take the Standardized Field Sobriety Tests. Typically once an officer asks you to perform the tests however, they already have Probable Cause to arrest you, and thus the SFSTs can help reduce that Probable Cause dependent on how you perform (though they are difficult).
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Andrew Roberts
    Law Office of Andrew Roberts | Andrew Stephen Roberts
    No- you only have to take a breath, blood or urine test. This only applies for your first DUI.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Michael Bialys THE DUI MAN
    Law Office of Michael Bialys THE DUI MAN | Michael Bialys
    You can legally decline all of those test. the Only test you are required to take by law is a chemical test blood or breath after being arrested.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Healan Law Offices
    Healan Law Offices | William D. Healan, III
    No. You have every right to refuse these inaccurate "tests".
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Offices of Douglas J. Lindsay
    Law Offices of Douglas J. Lindsay | Douglas J. Lindsay
    No HOWEVER if you refuse a roadside test, the officer can (and probably will) arrest you from evidence he has already obtained or seen (smell of intoxicants on you, your driving behavior that brought you to his attention etc.). Thereafter, if you refuse a breath, blood or urine test, upon request it does not matter if you are eventually found guilty or not guilty your driving privileges will be suspended for a minimum of six months (implied consent).
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Tennison & Soberon-Llort, PL | Christina Soberon-Llort
    No, you do not. They are entirely optional, and usually only incriminate you because it is hard to do very well on them even if you're stone cold sober.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    The Sarbaugh Law Firm
    The Sarbaugh Law Firm | Bruce W. Sarbaugh
    No, you don't have to take the roadsides. They are completely voluntary and you may (and should) decline to take them. The roadside maneuvers (Standard Field Sobriety Tests or "SFSTs") constitute a search and seizure of your person and therefore can only be administered if you voluntarily agree to them. The tests must be administered and interpreted pursuant to strict standards established by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the law enforcement officer must be certified to properly administer the tests. While the officer will likely tell you that the SFSTs assist them in determining whether you are safe to operate a motor vehicle, make no mistake - the officer is attempting to obtain and develop information which he/she will use to arrest you. Because of the bias nature of these tests, my advice is to decline to do the SFSTs. However, if you are arrested for a DUI or DWAI, you are required to submit to a chemical test of your blood or breath to determined your blood/alcohol level. If you refuse to submit to this test, your driver's license will be revoked for a period of one year.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Miller & Harrison, LLC
    Miller & Harrison, LLC | David Harrison
    Roadside tests are voluntary so you can decline to do them.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Charles J. Block
    Law Office of Charles J. Block | Charles J. Block
    No.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    Pingelton Law Firm | Dan Pingelton
    No. But if you refuse a breathalyzer, you will lose for license for a year.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Patrick E. Donovan, PLLC
    Law Office of Patrick E. Donovan, PLLC | Patrick E. Donovan
    No, you can refuse to take any sobriety tests and you can refuse to answer any questions. You do, however, have to produce your license.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Glass Defense Firm
    Glass Defense Firm | Jason M. Glass
    No. In fact I advise everyone to NOT take the field sobriety tests. They are designed for failure. If a cop gets you out of the car for tests, you usually are not getting back in. Politely decline any roadside testing. The only test you have to take is the breath test back at the station. And even then, if you refuse to take it, there are no criminal penalties only an additional license suspension.
    Answer Applies to: West Virginia
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Speaker Law Firm
    Speaker Law Firm | Theodore Speaker
    No.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/30/2013
    The Law Office of Stephanie M. Arrache
    The Law Office of Stephanie M. Arrache | Stephanie Arrache
    Those tests are called Field Sobriety Tests (FST), and no, you are not required to take them.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    Unless you are on probation that requires you to submit to these field sobriety tests, then no. Keep in mind that even if not on probation you need to submit to a breath or blood test after being arrested or else risk being charged with a refusal allegation that carries additional penalties.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo | Matthew Murillo
    No, those are all voluntary. Best thing to do is to NOT take them.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    The only test you have to take is the portable breath test, if you decline the portable you will be arrested for failure to test. All the others you have a right to refuse. The breath, blood or UA you can choose to take or decline, but if you decline they will arrest you.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
    You can refuse, but this is cause for arrest.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/14/2012
    Betts Legal Services
    Betts Legal Services | Shawn M. Betts
    The law does not require you to take any field sobriety tests. However if the officer has probable cause to place you under arrest for DWI, then the law requires that you submit to a blood, breath or urine test.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 3/14/2012
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