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Reasonable Period of Time

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Definition - What does Reasonable Period of Time mean?

Reasonable period of time is the amount of time that a driver arrested for driving under the influence is allowed to seek legal counsel from a DUI attorney prior to submitting to a blood alcohol concentration test.

"Reasonable period of time" is specifically addressed in the Minnesota Implied Consent Advisory information which must be read to all Minnesota drivers who are suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol and maintains the following:

  • The police officer believes the driver has operated or been in physical control of the motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.
  • The state requires the driver take a blood alcohol concentration test to determine the driver's BAC.
  • The driver has the right to refuse the test but refusal constitutes a crime.
  • The driver has the right to consult with a DUI lawyer but it is limited to a "reasonable period of time".
  • Failure to contact a DUI lawyer, refusing to decide to take the test or unreasonably delaying the test allows the state to charge the driver with refusing to take the blood alcohol concentration test.

Courts will determine reasonable period of time on a case by case basis. The courts will review a variety of factors before determining if it was granted including: the time of day that the driver contacts their DUI lawyer, the effort made by the driver to contact their attorney and the amount of time the driver has been under arrest. Minnesota courts also evaluate whether the arrested driver has "made a good faith and sincere effort to reach an attorney".

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