What Happens if I Refuse a Chemical Test?
In addition to being charged with DUI (also called DWI), you can also be charged with implied consent violation if you have refused to submit to a chemical test. These blood, breath, and urine tests are used to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC) level after an arrest for suspicion of drinking and driving.
Under the Tennessee Implied Consent Statute, any person who drives a motor vehicle in Tennessee has given their automatic consent to take a chemical test to determine the content level of drugs or alcohol in their blood. If these tests show the presence of a substance in the alleged offender's blood, it will be used against them in court, which makes individuals hesitant to consent.
Consequences of a Refusal
Although a motorist does have a right to refuse to submit to a chemical test in most cases, it may not be it is not often in their best interest to do so.
Instances in which a chemical test may be done without the motorists' consent include:
- Motorists with a prior DUI conviction
- Motorists whose DUI involved an accident with injury to another party
- Motorists presented with a warrant to obtain a chemical sample
A refusal, however, will result in a charge of implied consent violation. Even if a person wins their DUI case, they can still lose their implied consent case because of a refusal.
You Can Be Held Liable As a Passenger
This particular charge holds the owner or even a passenger in a car liable for any DUI offenses that an intoxicated driver may commit. It is even possible for the owner of the vehicle to be charged with a DUI by Consent if they were not present in the vehicle as long as the owner was aware that the driver was potentially impaired.
If you knowingly, as a passenger or as the owner of a vehicle, permit an intoxicated individual behind the wheel of a car you may be found legally liable for any criminal offenses that are committed. This charge forces you to be aware of any potential issues that may occur when getting behind the wheel of a car with an intoxicated individual or handing your car keys over to someone who has had too much to drink.
DUI Charges Have Serious Penalties
In addition, this charge is not to be taken lightly. As soon as it is levied against you or a family member, you should speak with a DUI lawyer in Murfreesboro for advice. If convicted, you will be subjected to the same penalties of a DUI charge including license revocation and a minimal 48 hour jail time for a first time offense.
Call (615) 796-6299 today for an initial consultation if you are facing any DUI charges.