When you decide to drive in New Jersey, you are actually agreeing to more than what you might realize. You probably know that you must drive in a safe manner and abide by all laws that pertain to driving. What you might not realize is that by driving in this state, you are agreeing that you will take a Breathalyzer test when you are asked to do so by a law enforcement officer. This is because of the concept of implied consent.
Implied consent means that you can actually face criminal charges if you decline to take a breath test when you are instructed to. If you opt to decline the breath test, the law enforcement officer will still be able to determine your blood alcohol concentration by taking you to a medical facility that can draw your blood. That blood test will be used to determine your BAC.
We know that you might be wondering what you can do if you refuse to take a breath test. That question really isn't easy to answer because of the penalties that are associated with the refusal. Even on your first offense, you are facing a license suspension of one to three years. That increases with each subsequent refusal.
There are some instances in which you will be able to fight the refusal charge. In some cases, it might be possible to use a ruling from 2001 as a backing for not having to take a blood test. That ruling noted that officers can't force a person to take the blood test against his or her will. That is only one example of how you can fight these charges. We can review your case and let you know what options you have.