Types of Field Sobriety Tests Used in Texas

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Brenna Mills

Never planning to drive under the influence is easier said than done. Though the act of driving while intoxicated is illegal, there are times when it may occur anyway. It is important for you to understand the different types of field sobriety tests you may be facing when you are pulled over.

A Fort Worth DWI Lawyer at Hoeller McLaughlin PLLC can help you navigate the tests you may have to take when being pulled over.

What Is a Field Sobriety Test?

Field sobriety tests come in many shapes and forms. They are conducted by law enforcement officers to determine whether or not an individual is intoxicated or impaired while driving a motor vehicle, and are frequently used during routine traffic stops.

If you are tasked with completing a field sobriety test, you may be aware that you could lose your license for a set amount of time. You should also understand that there are several different types of tests you may have to take.

  • Walk and Turn Test – One of the most well-known field sobriety tests, this test measures a driver’s ability to follow the directions set in place by a law enforcement official. The person taking the test must keep their arms at their sides while walking in a straight line.
  • One-Leg Stand Test – The person taking the test will be told to stand with one foot off of the ground while counting out loud. The subject will be expected to keep their balance in order to pass the test.
  • Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus Test – Officers test each eye of the subject in question. The signs that a subject may be intoxicated are an eye unable to follow an object smoothly, noticeable jerking of the eye, and jerking of the eye starting at a 45-degree angle.

Whether or Not to Take a Field Sobriety Test

You may choose not to take a field sobriety test. However, you may be facing a number of consequences if you choose to do so. 

For example, if you go to trial a jury may see the subject’s refusal to take a sobriety test as an act of guilt. In addition, if you do not choose to take the test, you may instead be required to take a blood alcohol content test, which is easier to prove if a subject is intoxicated.

Worse, refusal to take a field sobriety test leads to an automatic license suspension. Even if your lawyer gets your charges dismissed, you may still lose your license for that time. Luckily, your lawyer can help you defend your case even if you fail the field sobriety test. 

Receive the Right Representation with a DWI Attorney

If you or a family member are pulled over for driving under the influence or at a traffic stop, it will likely result in some form of a field sobriety test. You should be prepared for any test you may need to go through, as well as have the right representation in case you choose not to take the test.

Are you ready for us to help you with your case? A Fort Worth DWI Lawyer at Hoeller McLaughlin PLLC will walk you through the proper steps to guide you along the way. To get started, call 817-334-7900 or fill out the contact form at the bottom of the page.

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