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DUI and Implied Consent in Illinois

Posted on in DUI

implied consent, DUI, BAC testing, Illinois criminal defense attorneyAs a licensed driver in Illinois, you have been granted certain privileges related to the operation of a motor vehicle on roadways within in the state. In exchange for such privileges, you are expected to assume certain responsibilities under law regarding safe and proper driving practices. The state of Illinois also maintains "implied consent" laws to which, by operating a vehicle in accordance with the terms of their licenses, all drivers are subject. One of the more common applications of implied consent relates to blood-alcohol content (BAC) tests when a driver is suspected of driving under the influence (DUI).

Like the implied consent laws in most states, the statutes in Illinois require you to submit to a breath, urine, or blood test if you have been arrested on suspicion of DUI. With probable cause for such an arrest, the law enforcement officer must arrange that the test be conducted as soon as possible for the sake of accuracy. There is no right granted for you to contact an attorney prior to the test and the officer selects the type of test most appropriate for the situation.

In addition, the laws in Illinois provide your implied consent to a breath test, often referred to as a breathalyzer, without the necessity of an arrest. Tests like these are often used as a form of field sobriety tests to determine probable cause that may lead to an arrest for DUI. While you may be inclined to refuse a preliminary test, other circumstantial evidence may provide enough probable cause for your arrest anyway.

A refusal to submit to BAC testing can be extremely serious, especially after a DUI arrest. In fact, prosecutors may even use your refusal as grounds to show that you knew you were driving under the influence. Also, refusing to take a BAC test carries penalties in addition to those prescribed for a DUI conviction. A first-offense refusal results in one-year license suspension, with increased consequences for subsequent offenses.

Refusing a breathalyzer or other BAC test can present significant obstacles to your defense in light of the state’s implied consent laws. However, with the assistance of a qualified lawyer, the impact to your future may be minimized. Contact an experienced DUI defense attorney in Elgin today for a free consultation. Our team will investigate your case and work with you to provide the legal representation you deserve.

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