DWI: A Serious Crime Requiring Serious Legal Advocacy
Texas has more miles of road than any other state, and law enforcement agencies are aggressively monitoring those roads for suspected drunk drivers. If you’ve been charged with Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), you likely already know what’s at stake if convicted: Thousands of dollars in fines, jail time, loss of your license and numerous fees.
To give yourself the best chance of resolving charges favorably, you need the help of an experienced and tough criminal defense attorney. At the Law Office of Jose Mata, we have been tenaciously defending individuals charged with DWI for nearly 25 years. We can help you, too.
Can You Refuse To Take Field Sobriety Tests? Should You Refuse?
Many people wonder whether they have the right to refuse field sobriety tests when requested by an officer during a traffic stop. In Texas, you do have the right to refuse these tests, and there is no penalty for doing so.
Should you refuse to participate? Most defense attorneys would say that refusal is a wise idea. The point of these tests is not really to prove that you are sober enough to retain your coordination, but rather to give police officers more evidence that you are impaired, and therefore, subject you to chemical testing (blood or breath tests). Refusing may give the officer probable cause to arrest you on suspicion of DWI, but taking the test probably would as well.
Chemical Testing And Consequences For Test Refusal
During the stop, before you have been arrested, the officer may ask you to take a preliminary alcohol screening test, often in the form of a roadside breath-testing device. Generally speaking, you have the right to refuse this roadside test without penalty.
Once you have been arrested, however, you are required to submit to a breath-alcohol or blood-alcohol test. Refusal to take the test will result in a license suspension of at least 180 days.
Your license suspension is a civil administrative process separate from your criminal DWI case. You can request an Administrative License Revocation (ALR) hearing to contest suspension, but you must do so within 15 days of receiving notice of the suspension. Our firm is ready to represent you at ALR hearings as well as in your criminal proceedings.
Contact Us To Discuss Your Charges Today
The Law Office of Jose Mata is based in Conroe, Texas, and serves clients throughout Montgomery County and the Houston Metro Area. To schedule your initial consultation with a highly experienced criminal defense attorney, call us at 936-539-6282 or send us an email.