When we were younger, we all longed for the day that we could get our driver’s license. I’m sure you were taught that with driving privileges comes responsibility. In your mind, you were ready for that set of keys and the freedom to go anywhere you chose. However, did you know that once you acquired your license you gave your “express consent” that you would either submit to a blood or breath test should a DUI / DWAI accusation arise? It’s true, and refusal to take the BAC test results in the loss of your license for a year. The law in Colorado states:
“Any person who drives any motor vehicle upon the streets and highways and elsewhere throughout this state shall be deemed to have expressed such person’s consent to the provisions of this section.”
Example of Expressed Consent
Let’s say a person in Denver or Douglas County was pulled over for a routine traffic stop. The officer noticed that the individual failed to stop at the stop sign. After speaking with the driver, the officer feels like the driver has been drinking. The driver is asked to step out of the car and submit to a few road side / field sobriety tests (such as finger to nose, walk the straight line, and one leg stand). What most people do not know is that these tests are optional. If the cop decides there is probable cause (enough evidence) based on the tests, he will arrest the driver for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol (DUI) or Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI). The motorist will be arrested, taken to the nearest jail, and required to submit to either a blood test or breath (Breathalyzer) test. Unlike roadside field tests or the Portable Breath Test (PBT), the Express Consent Test is not optional. Refusal results in the automatic suspension / revocation of your license for a year.
successfully navigate through the court system.
Refusal of the Express Consent Test: Serious Consequences
Because you gave your consent to the Express Consent Test when you got your license, failing to submit to the blood or breath test in Arapahoe and Adams County will not only result in loss of your license, but it also cast a shadow of suspicion on you. The District Attorney will assume that you are guilty because of your refusal. This assumption will be used against you in court at any later jury trial and in the DMV Administrative Hearing.
Consequences of DUI / DWAI
There are many consequences to a DUI or DWAI sentence in Colorado. These include the loss of your driver’s license, your arrest, fines, court appearances, possible jail time, the alcohol treatment programs, and higher insurance costs.
Loss of Driver’s License
Jail / Prison Time
Charged with a DUI or DWAI? Here’s Why You Need a Lawyer
If you have been charged in Jefferson or Weld County with refusal to submit to a breath or blood test and are facing the loss of your license, it is important that you contact the experienced attorneys at the O’Malley Law Office today for a free consultation. DUI convictions can never be sealed – a conviction will have a negative effect on your future for the rest of your life. In a world in which mobility is crucial in getting to and from work, taking kids to soccer practice, and going to doctors appointments, it is important that you retain your license and your mobility. Don’t let a refusal ruin your life. We can help.
Colorado Expressed Consent Statute: C.R.S. 42-4-1301.1
“Any person who drives any motor vehicle upon the streets and highways and elsewhere throughout this state shall be deemed to have expressed such person’s consent to the provisions of this section.
(2) (a) (I) A person who drives a motor vehicle upon the streets and highways and elsewhere throughout this state shall be required to take and complete, and to cooperate in the taking and completing of, any test or tests of the person’s breath or blood for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content of the person’s blood or breath when so requested and directed by a law enforcement officer having probable cause to believe that the person was driving a motor vehicle in violation of the prohibitions against DUI, DUI per se, DWAI, or UDD. Except as otherwise provided in this section, if a person who is twenty-one years of age or older requests that the test be a blood test, then the test shall be of his or her blood; but, if the person requests that a specimen of his or her blood not be drawn, then a specimen of the person’s breath shall be obtained and tested. A person who is under twenty-one years of age shall be entitled to request a blood test unless the alleged violation is UDD, in which case a specimen of the person’s breath shall be obtained and tested, except as provided in subparagraph (II) of this paragraph (a).