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Language Issue Helps Saves Client's License

Posted Friday, September 22, 2017 by Andrew Charles Huff

A great outcome last week on a DUI case. My client was arrested for Driving Under the Influence but declined to take a breath test at the station, and therefore faced a year-long license suspension. However, English is a second language of my client and she clearly did not understand all the warnings read to her about a potential license suspension and didn’t even realize she was refusing the breath test.

At the hearing, we challenged the “refusal” of the breath test by arguing that although the officer used an interpreter to read her the “Implied Consent Warnings,” the officer could not have known for sure whether the interpreter was actually reading these warnings because the officer doesn’t speak Vietnamese. An officer is required to read these Implied Consent Warnings to anyone prior to asking them to provide a breath sample. But in this case, the State was unable to prove what warnings were actually read to my client because of the language barrier.

Great decision and a great win!

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