Did you know that–as a licensed driver–you are required to submit to an officer’s request to take a blood, breath or urine test if suspected of driving while intoxicated (DWI)? It’s true–under Texas’s “Implied Consent” law, you automatically give your consent to these tests. Failure to comply can result in severe penalties administered by the Department of Public Safety and could even be used as evidence against you during the criminal proceedings. An Implied Consent violation is a taken seriously by law enforcement and the courts, so you should immediately seek the advice of a DWI attorney to ensure that your best interests are protected.
When you are arrested for DWI, the officer is required to read you the Implied Consent warning, which explains the law as well as the penalties you may face for refusing to take a breathalyzer or blood test. If you still decline to take these tests, the officer can seize your license and provide you with paperwork that notifies you of your pending license suspension and serves as your temporary permit for the next 40 days.
You have only 15 days after your arrest to request a hearing with the Department of Public Safety and appeal your administrative license suspension. This is a firm deadline–even if your paperwork is one day late, you will be denied a hearing and your driving privileges will be taken away. To ensure that your request is completed correctly and submitted within the tight timeframe, working with an attorney is recommended.
The length of the license suspension depends on the number of Implied Consent violations on your criminal record. For a first offense, you may face a 180-day license suspension. This is increased to two years for a second offense within 10 years. In some cases, you may be eligible for a limited permit so you can drive to work, alcohol education classes, and other locations.
Attorney Ken Gibson has helped a number of clients successfully navigate the administrative license suspension process–but he only has a limited amount of time during which he can help you. For a free consultation on your pending suspension, please call our office now to make an appointment.