It is important to know your rights when you are questioned by law enforcement. In any encounter with the police, try to stay calm and polite because getting upset could cause the police to overreact, or even arrest you.

You generally have the right to remain silent and to consult with an attorney before answering any questions from police. However, some states require people to provide their name and address to the police in specific circumstances.

In Massachusetts, the only laws that require you to provide your name and address to the police are connected with being in a motor vehicle or riding a bicycle. However, it is a crime to give false identifying information to police if you are arrested. These laws are discussed in further detail below.

Please note, you should not rely on the information below when you are in other states as those states may have different laws.