The Truth About Miranda Rights and DUI Arrests in Georgia

Posted by Richard Lawson | Oct 24, 2018 | 0 Comments

As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, one of the most common complaints I hear about an individual's DUI arrest is that the officer failed to read them his or her “Miranda Rights.” This leads people to believe that their DUI charges will be dropped or dismissed because they believe their “constitutional rights” were violated during the DUI investigation or during their arrest. 

DUI Law in Georgia is extremely confusing, even criminal state law can be overwhelming. People believe that when arrested for DUI that the arresting officer is required by law to recite them their “Miranda” rights concerning their right to remain silent or their right to an attorney.

However, these rights are limited to specific circumstances that I will further elaborate in today's post.

Miranda Rights and Georgia DUI Arrests

Miranda Rights rarely apply in a DUI in Georgia. The constitutional rights that people are referring to are the following:

  1. The right to remain silent only actually applies to when someone is already in custody, and authorities are attempting to elicit a confession. Therefore, the right to remain silent doesn't really ever apply to a DUI arrest. DUI is a crime that is actually witnessed by police, and nine times out of ten, all of the evidence is gathered prior to the arrest. 
  2. The right to an attorney during a DUI arrest, a person does not have the right to an attorney until he or she has made a decision on implied consent. Therefore, the right to an attorney goes into effect only after someone's DUI arrest in Georgia. 

The truth is that Miranda rights would only apply in a DUI arrest under situations like the following:

  1. If a person is arrested for DUI, and the officer knows that his or her license is suspended.
  2. If a person is arrested for DUI, and the officer knows of a warrant for a different crime
  3. If a person is pulled over, and the officer sees in plain view any drugs inside the vehicle before the DUI investigation.

Practice Note

These facts usually lead people to asking, “Do I have any rights in a DUI arrest?” And the answer is yes. There is a statutory right that applies to every DUI in Georgia. This right is also known as the Georgia Implied Consent Warning. The implied consent warning requires an officer to recite the proper implied consent warning which outlines the legal requirements of a driver to submit to testing. 

If you or a loved one has been charged with a DUI in Georgia, contact a Georgia DUI Attorney today. There are other ways to challenge a DUI and Georgia DUI Defenses that may apply to your case. Contact us now. 

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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