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Are field sobriety tests required in South Carolina?

A field sobriety test can provide devastating evidence against you in a DUI case. Witness Tiger Woods’ recent field sobriety test in Florida.

In South Carolina, you can refuse to take the field sobriety test.  You can also refuse the roadside breath test. 

Learn more about your rights after a DUI stop

Police typically record field sobriety tests, which they can play back as evidence in a DUI case.  But are these tests really an accurate indication of whether a person was under the influence?

Many say no.  The tests – such as walking heel-to-toe and performing other unnatural maneuvers at night while a police officer  is giving you confusing instructions – are easy for anyone to fail.  Since the tests are not required by law, there is little reason to take one if you have had anything to drink.

The only test required by South Carolina law is a blood, breath, breath or urine test after you have been arrested and read the implied consent notice.  These tests are typically administered at the police station or at a hospital in the case of a blood test. Roadside breath tests using portable equipment are not required by law.

If you refuse a blood, breath or urine test following your arrest, you will face legal sanctions, such as suspension of your driver’s license. Only an experienced DUI defense lawyer who understands your situation can advise you whether you should take a blood, breath or urine test. 

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