How do Miranda Rights Apply to Virginia DUI?

Many people ask me about their Miranda rights when I discuss their Virginia DUI with them. How does that apply to the case?

Video Transcription

Hello, my name is Andrew Flusche. I’m a Virginia traffic and DUI attorney. One question that comes up a lot, and that I’ve talked and written about before, is: does it matter that the officer didn’t read me my Miranda Rights? Unfortunately, in many traffic and DUI cases the answer is no, it doesn’t matter that you weren’t read your Miranda Rights.

The key points for even a DUI case are that the officer has to be able to prove that they had a valid reason to pull you over, they have to prove that they had probable cause to arrest you, and typically, they are going to admit a breath or blood certificate to prove that your blood-alcohol concentration was above the legal limit. Usually your statements that you might have made after you’re in handcuffs aren’t really even needed for most DUI cases, and that’s what Miranda is concerned about.

Your Miranda Rights are concerned about statements that you make during a custodial interrogation. So when you’re being asked questions while in police custody, that’s when Miranda Rights come in. So if you don’t make statements, it’s not really an issue. You may make statements, but they may not need them in court. So that’s the thing we have to look at anytime there is an issue about Miranda. Were you actually in custody, were you being interrogated, and did you make statements that the Commonwealth needs for their case? Now, if you did make statements that they need and you were under custodial interrogation and Miranda wasn’t read, then it really DOES matter.

Now, if that sounds really complicated, it’s because it is. But this is definitely something to talk to an attorney about. I love answering the question about Miranda Rights because it shows that the person I’m talking to has done a little homework and kind of knows what issues to look for. Unfortunately, usually the answer is that it doesn’t matter. But definitely talk to an attorney for your unique case and see if it does matter for you. Maybe it could be a defense.

Andrew Flusche

My name is Andrew Flusche. I am a traffic and misdemeanor defense lawyer in Virginia. I limit my practice to traffic tickets and misdemeanor defense, so I know the ins and outs of these offenses. I literally wrote the book on reckless driving in Virginia which you can get on Amazon here or download for free here. I opened my practice in 2008 after earning my Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law. Since then, I have earned over 600 5-star reviews from happy clients on Google, Yelp, and Facebook. If you’ve been charged with a misdemeanor offense in Virginia, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Your initial consultation is always free, and you'll talk directly with me about the details of your case.

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