Under California law, you give implied consent for the police to submit to chemical testing after a DUI arrest. You do not have to give the police additional consent to draw blood once you’ve been arrested, though you may request other chemical testing instead. Under other circumstances, the police cannot draw your blood without your consent.
If you think that your blood may have been drawn improperly, it is possible to have the evidence suppressed. Speak with a skilled Los Angeles DUI lawyer at (310) 862-0199 to learn more about building a strong defense in your DUI case.
Implied Consent and BAC Testing in California
There are a number of legal codes that impact BAC testing in the state of California. The first of these laws deals with California’s “implied consent” regulations, covered under Vehicle Code (VEH) §23612. All drivers in California give “implied consent” to BAC testing each time they drive their vehicle.
Implied consent means that you are agreeing to take a BAC if so requested by a police officer after a lawful arrest for a DUI. However, this does not mean you are automatically consenting to a blood draw. Legally, you can choose to complete a:
- Breath test
- Blood test
- Urine test
The state of California gives you the choice about the kind of test you would like to take in most cases. However, in some situations, a specific kind of test may not be available. In this situation, you could have to choose to take a different kind of test after an arrest.
Consent for Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) Tests
Sometimes, police officers will also request that you take a PAS test at a DUI stop. PAS tests are a kind of breath test.
Legally, you do not have to take a PAS test, unless you are:
- Under 21
- On DUI probation
Drivers on DUI probation or drivers under 21 must also comply with orders to complete field sobriety testing (FST).
You can still get arrested if you refuse to take a PAS test in California. At this point, a law enforcement officer can legally require you to take a breath, blood, or urine test. Refusal to take a legally ordered BAC test can lead to additional penalties.
The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can also automatically suspend your license if you refuse a legal BAC test. This suspension can last for a period of months or even a year.
Warrants for BAC Tests in Los Angeles
Drivers offer implied consent to BAC testing every time they get behind the wheel in Los Angeles. Police officers can also order you to submit to a blood test if they get a warrant.
Recent changes to the law in California allow police officers to order a blood draw without a warrant in some cases. Police officers can have you take a blood test if you freely and voluntarily offer to take it. They can also order a test if:
- They suspect you were committing a felony DUI OR
- They suspect you were driving under the influence of drugs
Legally, you must comply with these requests for a blood draw, even if you do not want to take the test.
However, forced blood tests were recently found unconstitutional in another state. This means that California’s laws on forced blood draws could come under scrutiny in the future.
Results of Blood Tests for DUI Charges
Police officers often want drivers to take a blood test if they suspect the driver is under the influence. Taking a blood test can provide evidence that a driver drank alcohol or used drugs before getting behind the wheel.
The prosecution can use the results of a blood test to build their case. Members of our team can step in to dispute the results of a BAC assessment. We could work to argue that:
- The test was performed improperly
- Your rights were violated by the test
- The test was not handled correctly by the police lab
In some situations, we can request a blood “split.” This allows us to obtain a sample of the blood drawn for your BAC test. We can then send this sample to an independent lab for verification. In some situations, we can even get the results of a BAC test blocked here in Los Angeles.
Handle DUI Charges After a Blood Draw in Los Angeles
You have legal options if the police drew your blood after a DUI arrest. As we mentioned, we can focus on disputing the results of a BAC test. We can also focus on showing that you were stopped without reasonable cause. This could lead to the dismissal of your charges.
Members of our team take DUI charges seriously. These convictions can lead to:
- Jail time
- Restrictions on your driver’s license
- Time in an alcohol treatment program
We are prepared to help you handle any kind of DUI accusation. We’ll step in and take steps to get your charges dismissed or reduced to something less severe. For example, we could get a DUI accusation reduced to a charge for “dry” reckless. We can also help if your case goes to court.
Ask a Lawyer if the Police Can Draw Blood for a DUI without Consent
While drivers in California give “implied consent” to blood draws after a DUI arrest, not all blood draws are admissible in court. Speak with an experienced Los Angeles DUI Lawyer today at (310) 862-0199 to discuss your DUI charges. We’ll review the facts of your case with a FREE consultation.