It is a sign that you’ve been asked to pull over by the police when you see red flashing lights in your rear view mirror and hear blaring sirens. There may be many reasons for the cops having asked you to stop. It may be because you were not driving within the speed limits or you made an illegal turn.
However, there are also several instances that have been reported in the news about cops harassing and making people anxious when they are pulled over. It is imperative that you know your rights when pulled over by the police to avoid such experiences. In this article, we will delve into your rights when the cops pull you over.
Why do the Cops Ask you to Pull Over?
In most of the cases, the cops are just performing their duties to check if they suspect that you have committed an offense while driving. It could be one of these reasons that you’ve been pulled over:
- If the cops suspect you have consumed alcohol or drugs
- To check if your vehicle is mechanically fit
- To make sure that you have a driving license
- To see if you have vehicle insurance
When you are stopped for any of the reasons mentioned above, you must do as the cops instruct you. You must not get into any verbal argument with the police.
What are your Rights When Pulled Over by the Police?
It is advised that you follow the instructions of the police when they ask you to pull over, but at the same time you must be aware of your rights. Below are listed your rights when you are asked to pull over by cops.
- If you are stopped by the police, you don’t have to answer their questions if you don’t want to. However, you should always be polite. But in some serious cases where you have been involved in an accident, and you don’t provide answers to the question asked by the police, you’ll be charged with an offence.
- If the police suspect that you’ve been drinking and driving, they’ll ask you to provide various samples like a breath screening sample, breathalyzer sample, and blood or urine sample. You cannot refuse to roadside breath screening tests, but you can choose to consult your lawyer before taking a urine or blood alcohol test.
- If the police has asked you to pull over, they can check the mechanical condition of your car, your sobriety, or you license. But they cannot search your car without any search warrant.
- If you are arrested then you have the right to talk to your lawyer and the police officer must advise you to do the same as soon as possible. Also, they police must let you talk to your lawyer in private.
Encounters with police officers is not a pleasant experience. Sometimes encounters with police may drag you into disturbing situations. Therefore, it is important for you to learn about your rights when you are pulled over by a police. For more information, get in touch with us at Prowse Chowne to book a consultation now.