Texas Transportation Code § 724.011, Consent to Taking of Specimen, gives an individual who has been arrested for driving under the influence the right to refuse initial blood testing. This also applies to watercraft and any other type of vehicle operated in a public place. The implied consent law becomes relevant in arrests involving offenses that occur while a person is alleged to have been drunk driving or otherwise operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
Should you consent to a blood test?
The implied consent law that is currently in place in the state of Texas is something that anyone who is arrested for a DWI may be impacted by. Once the arrest has been placed for driving while intoxicated, the driver has the option to refuse a blood test. Something important to keep in mind, though, is that if the officer is able to obtain a warrant for the test, the driver’s initial denial of the officer’s consent provides grounds for more serious criminal penalties.
What this means is that if you are pulled over for drunk driving in Texas – and you know that you are intoxicated – it may be in your best interest to consent to the blood test right of the bat. Although the implied consent law frees you up from having to take a field sobriety test, it does nothing to protect you from tests performed after the arrest.
It’s always advisable to get to know your rights before you have an encounter with law enforcement. There’s no telling what will actually happen in those situations or how you’ll react at the moment – and unfortunately, no guarantee that the officer will act according to the current laws in place. In many cases, it is up to the accused to protect themselves by entering into those situations prepared with the right knowledge.