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Can I choose my chemical test, or do I have to take the test the officer requests?

Posted by Matthew Marin | Oct 24, 2017 | 0 Comments

In Rhode Island, there are three types of chemical tests that the Police can lawfully request that you submit to. Those tests include breath, blood, and urine. Practically speaking, the Police typically utilize breath tests and blood tests.

The Rhode Island DUI law does not permit the motorist to choose which of the two tests they would prefer to submit to. When the Police, having reasonable grounds to believe that an individual has been driving under the influence, requests that an individual submit to a blood or breath test the motorist retains the right to either submit to the test or refuse to submit to the test.

In most cases, if a motorist requests to submit to a different type of test (i.e. blood vs. breat, or vice versa) the Police will give the motorist one more opportunity to take the test requested prior to deeming the motorist to have refused the chemical test.

Obviously, most people in this situation do not know and are not made aware that at the Police Station, the police only have the capability to provide a chemical breath test. To conduct a chemical blood test, the motorist would need to be transported to a local hospital where a registered nurse could conduct the blood draw.

Therefore, when a police officer requests that a motorist submit to a chemical test the motorist retains the absolute right to refuse the test or consent to the test. But, the motorist does not have the right to choose which chemical test he or she would prefer to take; they simply have the right to consent or refuse to consent to the test as requested.

About the Author

Matthew Marin

Attorney Matthew T. Marin is a highly skilled criminal defense lawyer with an outstanding track record in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. With expertise in DUI/DWI, drug offenses, domestic violence, and white-collar crimes, he is dedicated to providing personalized and effective representation for his clients. A "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers and a member of the National College for DUI Defense and the National Trial Lawyers Top 100, Attorney Marin is committed to staying current with the latest legal developments and giving back to his community through pro bono work.


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Attorney Marin Named A SuperLawyer for Ten Consecutive Years 2014-2023

Attorney Matthew Marin has been named a Rhode Island SuperLawyer for 10 consecutive years from 2014 thru 2023. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in Rhode Island are selected by the Research Team at Super Lawyers to receive this honor. Super Lawyers selects lawyers who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement in their practice area.

Rhode Island Members of the National College for DUI Defense

Attorneys Matthew Marin and Kensley Barrett are both Rhode Island General Members of the National College for DUI Defense. Members represent some of the most experienced and cutting edge DUI defense attorney's throughout the Country. Nationwide, DUI laws are extremely complex and constantly changing and the College facilitates the exchange of innovative defenses throughout the Country.