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Why Do We Have Implied Consent Laws for Drunk Driving?

Posted on in Traffic Offenses

DUI, DUI arrests, DUI case, DUI charges, mandatory license loss, McHenry County criminal defense lawyer, reduce criminal chargesImplied consent laws play a crucial role in the field of driving under the influence (DUI). However, they can be difficult to understand, in large part because you do not have to do anything to infringe on them: Instead, it is something that you do not do that breaks an implied consent law.

To assist you in understanding implied consent laws, it is helpful to see what purpose they play in our drunk driving laws in Illinois.

What are Implied Consent Laws?

An implied consent law is an administrative rule that imposes an automatic penalty on a driver if they refuse to take a blood-alcohol content (BAC) test when requested to do so by police. In Illinois, according to the Illinois implied consent statute, this penalty is a one-year license suspension for the first offense.

Why Do We Have Implied Consent Laws?

In order to be convicted of driving under the influence (DUI), law enforcement first needs to obtain evidence that you were driving while intoxicated. This often means that you must take a blood alcohol content (BAC) test. However, police cannot just shove a breathalyzer in your mouth and tell you to exhale, or insert a needle and take a blood draw. Instead, they have to request that you submit to a BAC test in order to get the evidence they need. Of course, this leaves open the possibility to turn the police officer down. What then?

This is where implied consent laws come into play. By imposing an automatic penalty on anyone who refuses to comply with an officer's request that they take a BAC test, it deters people from refusing to take the test and pushes them into handing police evidence of a DUI offense on a platter.

In this way, implied consent laws close a major logistical loophole in Illinois' DUI law. It prevents DUI suspects from freely avoiding a BAC test by penalizing them for refusing to provide evidence against them. However, with DUI laws becoming more stringent in the past years, implied consent laws have had to keep up, and have become so harsh on their own that they have started infringing on people's Fourth Amendment rights.

McHenry County DUI Defense Attorneys Can Help

If you have been arrested and charged for drunk driving, having a DUI defense attorney on your side throughout the legal process can be one of the best ways to fight the charges and protect your rights and interests. A conviction for DUI is no small matter and carries with it some severe penalties that can put a lot of strain on your personal and financial life.

Contact the McHenry County DUI defense attorneys at Botto Gilbert Lancaster, PC, online to get the help you need. We are eager to help you today.



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