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Florida's DUI Blood Tests: Are they Ethical?

At the moment, an ongoing debate has headed to the Supreme Court regarding police officers who solicit blood tests from DUI suspects who refuse to offer a breath test. According to the University of Central Florida, the Supreme Court will not hear the case until sometime in January, which will give people plenty of time to form a strong opinion on either side of the issue.

Currently, Florida’s DUI laws declare that a driver cannot drive with a BAC over 0.08 percent. Yet if a driver appears impaired, even with a lower BAC, he or she can be arrested anyway. This means that if you are unable to operate your vehicle after one drink, then you can be taken to jail and charged with a DUI just as if you had actually surpassed the legal limit.

In addition to this, Florida law has not yet put its foot down on what to do when a suspect refuses a blood or breath tests. Without results from the test, it is harder for the police to prove that a driver truly is guilty of a DUI. While it is illegal to refuse these tests, and doing so merits additional punishments, there is not yet a ruling on whether or not the police should be allowed to force a test after refusal. In some states, when a person refuses a breath test he or she can still be arrested and forced to submit to the test when in jail. But what happens when a person vehemently refuses to take the test?

Can the police force it right then and there? According to some states, doing so would merit an unlawful search and seizure. The police need a search warrant in order to solicit a blood or breath test and suspects are protected under their Fourth Amendment rights. If you believe that your rights were violated because you refused to take a blood or breath test, talk to a DUI attorney at Thomas & Paulk. As the Supreme Court takes a look at this issue, it may revolutionize the way that DUI cases are handled in the state of Florida.

Tampa DUI Defense Attorney Thomas & Paulk, P.A. Attorneys at Law