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How do I use my right to remain silent?

On Behalf of | Aug 4, 2021 | Criminal Defense

Most people know that they have the right to remain silent when put under arrest. However, many people are unsure how to assert that right and protect themselves with it.

It is very easy to talk and say things you should not say due to nerves or worry over not complying with an officer. FindLaw explains that it is essential to learn how to assert your right to remain silent because officers will not do it for you. They will always try to get you to talk.

Clearly invoke

You must clearly invoke your right to remain silent to avoid any confusion. You will do this after receiving your Miranda rights from an officer.

The best way to invoke your right is to state it. Tell the officer that you are choosing to use your right to remain silent. While you certainly can just be quiet and refuse to speak, stating it out loud will clear up any potential confusion and make the officer aware you are being compliant.

It also helps to include that you wish to speak to your attorney. Once you make that assertion, officers will clearly understand they cannot ask you questions or try to get information out of you because anything they get is not usable in court.

The bottom line is to be clear and use exact language. You do not want to be ambiguous about your intent.

Stick to it

Even if you invoke your right to remain silent but then say something, it will not protect you. You must stick to it. You cannot say anything at any time. Evoking your right alone does not protect you. You must remain silent as well.