Whenever a cop stops you and starts questioning you with the classic “We smell something in your car” or anything else, you should know that you have your rights when you’re pulled over, and it’s for the best if you actually use them.
These rights have been established via case law, and stem from the Constitution itself.
Here are the magic phrases you can, and should, use when you get pulled over:
1. “Am I free to go?”
You are allowed to ask this question in any situation involving the police. If they’ve got nothing on you, they are not allowed to hold you any longer. However, if they answer No, you are, in fact, not free to go, and it means that you are suspected of doing something.
2. “I do not consent to any searches.”
Many law enforcement officers try to talk you into letting them search your vehicle. However, you should not give up your rights that easily.
3. “I have the right to remain silent”
And indeed you do – and you can always use it.
Often times it’s much better to remain silent and not tell out anything before you consult with a lawyer.
4. “I want to speak with my lawyer/ I want a lawyer”
If you happen to reach this particular point, you’re in the deep. However, you should say nothing until your lawyer arrives.