How does implied consent work?

| Jun 7, 2021 | Blog

Massachusetts motorists have a duty to follow the law and keep others safe. Anyone who drives while under the influence of alcohol or drugs violates both these items. Upon noticing erratic or dangerous driving behavior, the police may pull a vehicle over. Drivers suspected of a DUI then face issues related to the state’s implied consent law.

Implied consent in Massachusetts

Massachusetts is an implied consent state, which means anyone suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol “agrees” to a Breathalyzer test. Anyone who refuses a Breathalyzer test has their driver’s license suspended.

Persons 21 years of age and older with test results revealing a BAC of .08 or greater could face an immediate suspension, as well. Reinstatement requires a hearing, making things further complicated for persons charged with a DUI/OUI offense.

Persons refusing the test won’t face criminal charges, but the statutory impact might be severe. Expect the vehicle to be impounded immediately after the driver refuses the test.

The suspension period varies based on the driver’s past history. Someone with several DUI/OUI convictions could face a permanent driver’s license suspension.

Seeking legal remedies for the charges

After refusing a chemical test, the motorist could attempt a defense during the hearing. If the driver did not refuse the test, bringing this fact up seems advisable. In some instances, the police officer lacked the requisite reasonable suspicion to stop the vehicle. When law enforcement employs bias as an excuse to pull over cars, the drunk driving stop may be illegal.