Texas DWI Total Refusal
Refusal to take a Breath or Blood Test
In Texas, you may have heard that there are No Refusal Weekends. This means that legally, if a police officer suspects you are driving under the influence, you are not allowed to refuse a breath or blood test. DWI isn’t limited to alcohol. It can include drugs as well. Usually these tests are to find out if you have a BAC of 0.08 or higher. In Texas, a total refusal DWI case can have long lasting effects on your life.
What happens when you refuse?
A total refusal off all tests, including the field sobriety tests, will result in a driver’s license suspension for 180 days. A 180 day suspension is for your First DWI in Texas. If you have refused a breath or blood test on a previous date, the suspension will be for 2 years!
Once you refuse, the police officer will have you sign a form where you acknowledge the consequences of refusal. This is the Texas DIC-24 Statutory Warning. These consequences are the license suspension and the fact that the refusal can later be used against you. The officer will take your driver’s license and give you a temporary driving permit which lasts approximately 41 days.This is called the Texas DIC-25 Notice of Suspension Temporary Driving Permit. On the DIC-25, you are advised that you can fight the license suspension within 15 days of the arrest. This is their warning that you should request an ALR Hearing. However, it’s important to keep in mind that your license will more likely than not be suspended at the ALR Hearing due to your total refusal. Examples of these can be seen below:
On the other hand, if you refuse all tests, an officer may request a Blood Draw Warrant. This will be a Warrant, signed by a Judge, ordering a nurse or medical professional to take a sample of your blood for testing. The blood test usually takes a couple weeks to perform. The test is to determine your blood alcohol concentration. If you’re arrested for DWI and need a DWI lawyer near Georgetown, TX, I’d be happy to explain more about the important timelines.
Driving during your license suspension
If you’re like most people in Texas, you know it’s almost impossible to get around without a car. While your license is suspended you’re not legally allowed to drive. Driving on a suspended license will get you arrested again and you’ll have another criminal charge piled on top of your pending DWI. If you need to drive, then you’ll need to request an Occupational Driver’s license for work, household errands, trips to the doctor, etc…
Your DWI and the criminal case
Dealing with your license suspension is just one half of a DWI charge. The other half focuses on your criminal charge. The punishment may include jail time, fines, probation, Court costs, and a conviction on your record. Your total refusal of all the DWI tests can and will be used against you at trial. Prosecutor’s assume, and will tell the jury, that you refused because it’s a sign of guilt. That may or may not be true.
Sometimes you will be arrested on the scene. Other times, police may wait and get a warrant of arrest and arrest you at a later time. Either way, you’ll have to tackle both parts of your DWI case. Talk to a Georgetown DWI attorney to explore your options and start fighting your DWI charge.
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