Your Right to an Attorney After a DWI Arrest

A police officer pulls you over. You start to feel enervated and your pulse starts racing. What is going to happen? You become even more anxious when you believe the cops will investigate you for a DWI. When this occurs, what steps do you take? Do you comply with the cops? Do you consent to a field sobriety test? When should you contact your lawyer?

If you are detained, you have the right to call a lawyer irrespective of the stage of interaction. In Minnesota, you have the right to talk to a lawyer during a DWI investigation once the interaction reaches a “critical stage”. Most police officers will not provide you with the chance to talk to your attorney before that stage occurs.

What is “Critical Stage”?

This is the point when the officer asks you to take an evidentiary chemical test. Once you are arrested for a DWI offense, the officer will read you the Implied Consent Advisory (IC). This will either happen in the squad car or at the police station. In the IC, the officer will ask whether you would wish to consult with your lawyer before taking a test.

Consulting with an attorney

Minnesota law requires the police officer to give you a reasonable window of time to talk with your attorney. If you decide to consult with your lawyer after being arrested for DWI, it does not mean that you are being difficult or uncooperative with the police. You are exercising your rights.

If you exercise your right and decide to contact your attorney, many police departments will allow you to access your mobile phone. Go online and search for a DWI attorney. Our firm has a DWI Lawyer available 24 hours a day to advise you through this unpleasant but critical process.

If you do not have a phone, the officers can provide you with one, as well as a directory of defense lawyers so that you can locate an attorney. Minnesota DWI laws have changed recently, especially in cases where the driver refuses to take a test. It is incredibly important that you know your rights.