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What Are California Implied Consent Laws?

Under California DUI laws, officers can enforce implied consent. This means that anyone who drives on California roads automatically consent to submit to a chemical test when law enforcement officers believe that they have been driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Drivers can choose between a blood test, a breath test or a urine test - but they must submit to one of those DUI tests. Refusing to submit to a test comes with dire consequences that are often more severe than being arrested for DUI.

What Happens If You Refuse a Test?

Refusing to submit to a BAC test is against California's implied consent laws in the California Vehicle Code Section 23612. Refusal to take this test results in the automatic suspension of your driver's license for 1 full year. In addition, you can still be found guilty of DUI and prosecutors will use your refusal as evidence that you knew you were intoxicated a the time of the arrest. If this is your second refusal, you will lose your license for 2 full years.

Most Oakland DUI defense lawyers agree that it does not help your case to refuse to submit to a BAC test. Even if your BAC results are over the legal limit (0.08), there are ways your DUI defense attorney can fight these charges. Perhaps the breathalyzer was not calibrated correctly? Or perhaps the officer failed to administer the breathalyzer properly? Or perhaps the blood test was taken too long after your arrest?

In many of these cases, your lawyer can fight to have your DUI charges reduced to a wet reckless or even dismissed altogether if the officer did not have probable cause to stop your car.

Need Legal Counsel? Contact the Oakland DUI Defense Attorney from the Law Office of Nabiel C. Ahmed.


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