Refusing a DWI Test and Implied Consent in New York
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If Arrested for DWI in New York, Am I Required to Take a Chemical Test?
Technically, no. If you are arrested and charged with a DWI in New York, you may choose not to take a breath or blood BAC (blood alcohol content) test. However, a refusal to do so will have serious consequences due to New York's implied consent laws.
What Is Implied Consent?
New York's implied consent law states that any person who operates a motor vehicle in the state shall be deemed to have given consent to a chemical test of one or more of the following: breath, blood, urine, or saliva, for the purpose of determining the alcoholic and/or drug content of the blood. Thus, you give consent to a chemical test simply by driving in the state.
What Are the Penalties for Refusing to Take a Breath or Blood Test after Being Arrested for DWI?
If you are lawfully arrested for a DWI and refuse to submit to a BAC test, you will be subjected to mandatory civil fines and license suspensions. The penalties for refusing to take a BAC test are in addition to the standard penalties for DWI. Even if you are acquitted of DWI charges, you will still face these penalties:
- Chemical Test Refusal: Mandatory 6 month license suspension and $300 civil fine
- Chemical Test Refusal Within 5 Years of a Previous DWI Related Offense: Mandatory one year license suspension and $750 civil fine
It is important to realize that you can be convicted of both a DWI and a Chemical Test Refusal.
Do I Need a Lawyer?
DWI arrests are serious and can have severe consequences. If you refused a chemical BAC test when arrested, you need to contact a criminal defense attorney who specializes in DWI defense immediately. Your attorney will be able to help you fight any charges and may be able to help you reduce your penalties.
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Last Modified: 11-11-2014 12:47 PM PST
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