Courts And Law Enforcement Working To Erode “Right” To Refuse Tests

Courts And Law Enforcement Working To Erode “Right” To Refuse Tests

Each day people are arrested for DUI in Bellingham, Ferndale, Lynden, Mt. Vernon – all throughout Whatcom County and Skagit County – and are unsure what to do. At the first possible moment, when law enforcement begins to investigate, you will need to insist on an experienced and intelligent DUI attorney to help answer questions and advise you through such a critical process. If you are arrested for DUI in Washington State you will be asked to provide a sample...


Each day people are arrested for DUI in Bellingham, Ferndale, Lynden, Mt. Vernon – all throughout Whatcom County and Skagit County – and are unsure what to do.

At the first possible moment, when law enforcement begins to investigate, you will need to insist on an experienced and intelligent DUI attorney to help answer questions and advise you through such a critical process. If you are arrested for DUI in Washington State you will be asked to provide a sample of your breath under the Implied Consent law contained in RCW 46.20.308. This podcast by DUI Attorney Jonathan Rands explains more about Implied Consent.

In Washington State, Implied Consent includes the “right” to refuse; however, your refusal to provide a breath or blood sample may be used against you if you are prosecuted for the crime of DUI. What is not provided in the law, is the fact that police officers may ask a judge to issue a search warrant for a sample of your blood in the event that you refuse to give a breath or blood sample voluntarily. Yes –State Agents of the government may, can, and with increasing frequency, can force you, even physically restrain you, to provide a sample of blood under the rationale that evidence of the crime exists in your blood and must be taken or else it will be lost forever.

This practice is becoming policy in various states across the country in what are becoming known as “No Refusal” events. In Tennessee, the practice has just been authorized by their state legislature, and law officers and medical personnel have ramped up efforts to eliminate “refusals.” The federal government, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), has jumped in as well, making resources available and helping local agencies coordinate efforts for “No Refusal” events. In Washington state, local police, as well as sheriff departments, have policies in place to obtain warrants specifically for individuals who exercise their “right” to refuse.

Of course, the best defense to a DUI charge is to not drink in the first place and to enjoy alcohol responsibly. If you find yourself in need of outstanding DUI Defense contact Jonathan Rands.  A DUI charge is a serious criminal offense and you will need an attorney that understands what, exactly, the law means when it deceptively gives you a right that the government can sidestep with a phone call to a waiting judge and prosecutor.