You’re not legally required to submit to a breathalyzer (breath test) or a urine test in Texas. This means that if you’ve been arrested for a DWI (driving while intoxicated), you have the right to refuse a breathalyzer or urine test. But you should know that refusing these tests comes with severe consequences due to the state’s implied consent law.
Based on this law, if you were arrested for something based on acts that you allegedly committed while driving in Texas, it’s as if you’ve consented to chemical testing. Put simply, this means that you have automatically agreed to undergo chemical testing whenever needed if you drive in the state.
The Consequences for Refusing a Breathalyzer or Urine Test Can Be Severe
While you can refuse a urine or breath test if you are lawfully arrested for a suspected DWI, you will face administrative penalties. It’s also crucial to note that even if the DWI charges are dropped, and you are acquitted, the administrative penalties will still be enforced.
If it’s your first DWI offense and you refuse chemical testing, your driver’s license will be suspended for 180 days. But if it’s your second offense within ten years of your first DWI offense, your license will be suspended for two years. If your license was suspended based on your refusal to undergo a urine or breath test, you could apply for an occupational driver’s license. This will allow you to go to work and conduct essential household errands.
On the other hand, refusing to undergo chemical testing may help you avoid a conviction for DWI. Likewise, since the administrative penalties for refusing chemical is less serious than the penalties for a DWI conviction, this option may appeal to a lot of drivers. But it’s also vital to note that if you refuse to undergo a breathalyzer test or urine test and you get convicted of DWI, you will face both the DWI conviction penalties and the administrative penalties.
Can The Police Force Me to Take a Urine Test or Breathalyzer?
Unfortunately, yes. Law enforcement officers can force you to take a breathalyzer or urine test, even if you don’t want to, in any of the following situations:
- If you were involved in a DWI accident involving severe injuries or death
- If you have two previous DWI convictions, intoxication manslaughter, intoxication assault, or a previous DWI conviction with a minor in your vehicle
Speak to an Experienced San Antonio, TX, Criminal Defense Attorney Now
Submitting and refusing to submit to a urine test or breathalyzer test both carry serious consequences. The San Antonio, TX, criminal defense attorney of Hoelscher Gebbia Cepeda PLLC is here to help you better understand the best options for your specific case.
Keep in mind that a criminal conviction for DWI comes with harsh consequences and penalties that can negatively impact your entire life. To find out more about your case, you can discuss your situation with our San Antonio, TX, criminal defense attorney. You can call our office at 210-222-9132 or send us an online message to schedule your appointment.