What are common terms that relate to my DWI/DUI arrest?


dwi dui jargon and terms

Have you recently been arrested for a DWI/DUI? When it comes to Louisiana state laws regarding DWI/DUI arrests, there are a lot of different terms used surrounding the charges you may face. Some of the common terms relating to your DWI/DUI arrest include, but are not limited to, the following:

  •  Miranda Warning/Rights
  • Implied consent
  •  DWI or DUI
  • Blood alcohol concentration (BAC)
  • Standardized Field sobriety test (SFST)
  • License suspension or revocation

No matter the case, it’s great to know the ins and outs of each of these common terms so you can provide the right responses. Criminal charges like DWI/DUIs can result in life-changing consequences depending on the severity of the situation.

In some cases, law enforcement officers can use challenging-to-understand jargon in a manipulative way to intimidate you. With knowledge of these terms, you won’t be caught off guard.

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Terms and Jargon To Know In Your Criminal Defense Case

Miranda Rights

When you are given the Miranda warning by an officer, you are notified of your right to remain silent and that anything that you say can be used against you in a court of law. Miranda warnings also tell you that you can refuse to answer any questions/not provide any information to officials.

Implied Consent

Implied consent in a DWI/DUI case means that any person that is driving on public roads is privileged to do so. By this action, the police have the right to request you submit to a breathalyzer test so long as they have reasonable grounds to suspect you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The Department of Public Safety also has the right to institute license suspension proceedings against you if you refuse. Still, you have the right to refuse and to challenge your suspension based on same via the appellate process outlined on our website.


DWI stands for driving while intoxicated but can also mean driving while impaired. DUI stands for driving under the influence, which can include alcohol, prescription or illegal drugs, and more.

Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC)

Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) defines the amount of alcohol that is present in a person’s bloodstream, which can be found through a chemical test, such as a breath or blood test. If you have a BAC of .10%, you currently have .10 grams of alcohol in your blood for every 100 ml.

Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST)

When a person is being questioned for drunk driving, tests are used to determine whether the person should be charged with a DWI/DUI. One of the ways to determine sobriety is by the standardized field sobriety tests. SFST include three parts: the walk-and-turn test, the one-leg stand test and the horizontal gaze nystagmus test. 

You can decline the SFST in Louisiana without any penalties, as they do not provide scientific evidence of the amount of alcohol in your body.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus

As a part of the SFST, you may take a horizontal gaze nystagmus test. An officer asks you to follow a stylus with your eyes and eyes only, while he/she checks your eyes for involuntary jerking typically associated with the presence of alcohol or drugs, which can include a lack of smooth pursuit. There are numerous types of nystagmus, however, and many different causes associated with same.

License Suspension or Revocation

When DWI/DUIs charges occur, license suspension or revocation follows. Your license can be seized if you meet any of the requirements of  LA R.S. 23:667. Likewise, unless you file an appeal within 30 days, and get a hearing date scheduled with the Louisiana Division of Administrative Law (DAL), your license will be suspended automatically. License suspensions are temporary, and license revocations are typically permanent.

Get The Johnson Firm’s Help in Your DWI/DUI Case

No matter what your DWI/DUI involves, you need a strong attorney fighting on your behalf to get the best outcome for your case. The Johnson Firm will lead you on the right path and help you feel confident throughout the process. We work to win justice on your behalf.

 Schedule a consultation with our DWI/DUI team by calling (337) 433-1414 or send us a message to get The Johnson Firm on your side today!

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