Protecting Your Rights After Refusing A Breath Test
Breathalyzer tests, blood alcohol tests and field sobriety tests may all be administered during a DWI traffic stop. The purpose of these tests is to determine if the driver is under the influence of alcohol. However, these tests are not always accurate.
Some people choose to refuse the breath test without understanding the implications of a refusal.
At the law office of John M. Petruzzi, Attorney at Law, we represent clients in drunk driving cases from our Houston-based law office. If you have refused the breathalyzer or Intoxilyzer 5000 test, please contact an attorney to schedule a free consultation.
What Happens If You Refuse To Take A Breath Test?
Refusing a breath test in Texas can lead to a 180-plus day driver’s license suspension. This is due to implied consent laws in Texas. When an individual receives a driver’s license in Texas, he or she is giving consent to submit to future chemical tests in the event of being pulled over for suspicion of drunk driving.
Refusing a breath test may suggest that you have been drinking and driving — but it does not prove it. The fact that you refused cannot be used against you in a court of law. If you are charged with DWI, you should contact a breath test refusal attorney as soon as possible to learn about your legal options. We have handled numerous breath test refusal cases in Texas, and can evaluate your case to identify your strongest defense options.
What Happens If You Refuse Field Sobriety Testing?
Field sobriety tests are unreliable indicators of intoxication. Nerves, poor lighting, fatigue or a mobility issue can all affect how an individual performs on a field sobriety test.
You are not required by law to take a field sobriety test during a DWI traffic stop. Any observations by the police officer — no matter how biased they may be — may be used against you. However, the fact that you refused the tests can also be used against you in a court of law.
If you are confident that you can perform well on a field sobriety test, it may be beneficial to take it. However, if you are not confident that you can perform well on a field sobriety test, it may be wise to politely refuse. Regardless, talk to a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after your DWI traffic stop.
Find out more information about Texas DWI and DWI laws.