What to Do If You are Pulled Over for a DUI in DE

Do you know what to do if you are pulled over for a DUI in Delaware? Do you know what is and what is not within your rights? The consequences of a DUI are very steep, so know your rights before you are in a tricky situation.


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If you are pulled over for driving under the influence in Delaware, your life can get very complicated very quickly. You are now facing a variety of challenges including:

  • criminal charges,
  • a DMV hearing,
  • a license suspension,
  • and thousands of dollars in fines, fees, and court costs.

While it is common knowledge that driving after drinking alcohol is against the law, people still do it. Follow these steps to help your DUI case in Delaware.

When You Are Pulled Over

Criminal Defense from the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & GayAfter drinking, never get behind the wheel of the car. Even buzzed driving is considered drunk driving in Delaware. We commonly hear stories of people who only had 1 or 2 beers, and they attempt to drive home. They feel fine to drive, but they are pulled over for speeding or running a stop sign. You might also be pulled over at a Delaware DUI Checkpoint

10 Things to Do When You Notice Flashing Lights Behind You:

  1. Remain calm & Be Polite
  2. Use your turn signal to pull over
  3. Keep your hands on the wheel
  4. Turn on your dome light at night
  5. Do not make any fast movements
  6. Wait until the officer asks, then hand over your documentation
  7. Do not get out unless the officer asks
  8. Do not admit to drinking (You may invoke the 5th amendment)
  9. Comply with field sobriety & breathalyzer tests

No matter why they are pulling you over, you should remain calm. When the police are behind you with flashing lights, carefully pull over to the side of the road using your turn signal. As the police officer or officers approach your vehicle, stay inside the vehicle with your hands on the steering wheel. Turn on your overhead light at night to make the interior of the car visible.

Be polite and cooperate with the police. Do not make any fast movements. Once it is requested by the police officer, find and produce your driver’s license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance.

Inform the police before reaching for your wallet, insurance, or registration. Remember that this is a very stressful experience for the officer as well. The more comfortable you make them feel, the better off you may be. Do not get out of your vehicle unless you are asked to. If you are asked to get out try very hard not to stumble or fall when getting out.

If you choose to, you may invoke the Fifth Amendment. This means that you do not have to answer any questions they ask you. If the police officer asks if you have been drinking calmly say that you are claiming your Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate yourself.

Field Sobriety & Breathalyzer Tests

DUI Defense from the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & GayIf/when you are asked to take a chemical test or blood alcohol test, you do not have the right to refuse that test. Due to Delaware’s Implied Consent Law, you must take the test. Otherwise, your driver’s license will be automatically suspended for a period of 12-18 months. The period of suspension is determined by your previous DUI history. 

However, THE POLICE MUST HAVE A REASON TO BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE INTOXICATED. If they do not have just cause, your breathalyzer may not be admissible in court. 

Refuse any and all field sobriety tests. Field Sobriety Tests are not required under Delaware law. You can fail these tests for numerous reasons even if you are completely sober such as having poor balance, poor vision and or a medical condition. 

If you are ultimately arrested for DWI in Kent County, Delaware or Sussex County, Delaware, do not hesitate to call your Delaware Drunk Driving Defense Attorneys in the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & Gay at 302-855-9300. You can also click here to email us. Why do you need a DUI Attorney?

Losing Your License

Criminal Defense from the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & GayIf you are arrested and charged with a DUI or DWI in Delaware, the officer will take your license and issues an “OFFICIAL NOTICE AND ORDER OF REVOCATION.” This is your official notice that your Delaware driving privileges will be suspended beginning 15 days later for a minimum of 90 days up to 24 months. Learn more about losing your license after a DUI

If you fail to request a Delaware DUI Administrative Motor Vehicle Hearing within those 15 days, you will lose your license. Ensure that you request you Delaware DUI Administrative Motor Vehicle Hearing as soon as possible. A Delaware DUI Attorney can help with requesting a hearing. After scheduling the hearing, you will receive a temporary driver’s license pending the outcome of your hearing. 

Out of state drivers will need to request a Delaware DUI Administrative Motor Vehicle Hearing within 15 days of receiving your notice. If you fail to request a hearing, you may lose your driving privileges in the State of Delaware. 

If you lose your license (in-state drivers and out-of-state drivers), you will need to pay for and complete an alcohol rehabilitation course and pay a license reinstatement fee if you win your trial in court. Learn more about reinstating your license after a DUI in Delaware

If you have received a DUI within the last 15 days, immediately call 302-855-9300 to speak with a Delaware Drunk Driving Defense Attorney at the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & Gay

Plead Not Guilty at your Hearing

Plead NOT GUILTY at your DUI HearingIf you were unable to consult with a Delaware DUI Attorney before your first court appearing, you should plead Not Guilty to all charges including your DUI. This includes any speeding charges or reckless driving charges that may have been added to your case. 

Even if your Breathalyzer test or Blood Test shows that your blood alcohol content (BAC) was .08 or greater, you can (and should) plead Not Guilty! This invokes your constitutional rights that require the State to prove the charges against you beyond a reasonable doubt. Regardless of whether you think you are guilty or not, always plead NOT GUILTY to DUI charges. 

You can request to have an attorney present or to consult with your attorney at any time during this process. If you feel hesitant or unsure of your decision, call the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & Gay at 302-855-9300 for assistance with your Delaware DUI

Your Delaware DUI in Court

Attorneys at the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & GayAfter your hearing, you will be scheduled to appear for a criminal trial for your Delaware DUI. You will be required to appear in court for this trial, but you can have a lawyer with you! Ensure that you meet with your Attorney before your trial. 

Call 302-855-9300 to schedule a FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION for your case. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Murray, Phillips & Gay can help you avoid the extensive consequences of DUI in Delaware. Get help today. You can also email our lawyers for more help

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