There is a very important concept called "Implied Consent" that is contained within the Texas Transportation Code. It states under Section 724.001 that a person has "Deemed to have consented, subject to this chapter, to submit to the taking of one or more specimens of the person's breath or blood for analysis to determine the alcohol concentration or the presence in the person's body of a controlled substance, drug, dangerous drug, or other substance."
This means that as an integrated part of the possession and use of a driver's license that you have implied you will consent to a breath or blood test for the purpose of determining intoxication. The law allows, with some exceptions, for an individual to refuse such tests. This is stated in Section 724.013 of the statute as: "Except as provided by Section 724.012(b), a specimen may not be taken if a person refuses to submit to the taking of a specimen designated by a peace officer". However such refusal will mean an immediate and automatic suspension of your license for 180 days whether or not you are ever subsequently prosecuted for the crime. This particular aspect of a DWI related offense can be tremendously confusing and is often the cornerstone of any such case that a lawyer will build for their client.
Refusal to Take Breathalizer Test
A common confusion that most drivers have is the validity and acceptance of portable "Breathalyzers" and their use in roadside testing. These handheld devices can be highly inaccurate and are primarily used by Peace Officers during an arrest for the purpose of establishing probable cause. The results of such tests are generally not recognized as valid evidence in court. For this reason it is possible to refuse such tests without triggering an automatic suspension. You may not however refuse a breath test at a police station or medical facility without penalty, including a suspension of your driver's license for an extended period. There are numerous issues and inaccuracies connected with breath tests and the machinery used. Minor defects or incorrect setting can easily throw the results of such a test off. If the results of the tests are brought into serious question then this often results in the case being entirely dismissed. We at Alband, Lane & Balderama have spent years in defense of DWI charges and specialize in determining the validity of your breath and blood test results.
Even if you have "blown above the limit" do not assume your case is lost. Contact us today.
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