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Georgia Implied Consent Law – DUI Implied Consent in GA

How Implied Consent Laws in Georgia Impact a Driver’s License

By Bubba Head, Atlanta DUI Attorney

Motorists across Georgia drive their cars every day, unaware that (under Georgia DUI law) they already agreed to submit to blood testing, breath testing, or urine testing if suspected of DUI, simply by operating a car or truck on our highways.

This “law” is part of the Georgia implied consent law which goes further to address issues, such as driver license suspension if the driver refuses testing. The 3 different Georgia implied consent warnings are set forth in a statute – the Georgia Implied Consent law. Under this DUI law, any person driving on Georgia highways who is suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs has “implied” (given) his or her consent to be tested by police, but only AFTER ARREST!

Any pre-arrest roadside tests offered by police are NOT part of the implied consent law Georgia. This aspect of driving law in Georgia needs to be known by anyone traveling or residing in Georgia.

The GA implied consent law relates ONLY to drunk driving cases. Any person arrested for driving under the influence must be READ a WARNING that basically state that IF the post-arrest, official implied consent tests is not agreed to (by the detained, accused drunken driver), he or she can lose all right to drive for a full year.

No DUI work permit, no temporary license, and no provision license will be allowed, if a DUI refusal is put on your Georgia DDS record. This harsh DUI license suspension consequence is why you must file an ALS appeal within 10 business days.

Driver’s License Taken – How to Get My License Back?

After being written up by the arresting officer for violating the implied consent law in Georgia, you have only 10 business days after the date of the incident to file an appeal of this pending administrative license suspension. It must be FILED with the Georgia Department of Driver Services (GA DDS).

A filing fee of $150 must accompany the written appeal. However, failure to file the appeal on or before the ten (10) business day deadline will result in an automatic license suspension, which takes effect on the 31st day after your initial arrest day.

This means that you could lose your driver’s license (or privilege to drive in Georgia if licensed by another state) for at least one year for any DUI administrative license suspension for “refusal” to acquiesce to the Georgia implied consent law. “Filed” means that you can obtain a hearing if you can prove a postmark or a certified mail letter stamped within the ten business days, or by physically delivering your payment to GA DDS headquarters.

The address is 2206 East View Parkway, Conyers, Georgia 30013. The phone number is 678-413-8400. The DDS Customer Contact Center is open Monday – Friday from 7:00 AM – 12:30 PM and from 1:00 PM – 5:15 PM. Tuesday is their busiest day.

A Georgia DUI Lawyer Who Specializes in DUI Defense Can HELP YOU Keep Driving

The legal rules applicable to Georgia implied consent law are both complex and highly technical. Therefore, seeking expert legal advice from an experienced and knowledgeable DUI law firm in Georgia, that is staffed by DUI lawyers, is your first step. DON’T SCREW THIS UP, and possibly lose the right to drive by not following the rules for timely filing of the ALS license suspension appeal. Our Georgia DUI attorneys know ALL of the legal errors in the police procedures for complying with the implied consent laws in Georgia.

Three Different Implied Consent Warnings in Georgia

Because different “categories” of drivers are held to different standards for the permissible  BAC level in the driver’s blood, breath or urine, three different legal admonishments are part of the GA law for implied consent. The three warnings are targeted to these types of drivers:

  1. Any person operating a commercial motor vehicle (CDL) cannot have in excess of 0.040 grams percent of alcohol.
  2. Any underage driver (under 21) can only have 0.020 grams percent or less of alcohol.
  3. All other drivers, age 21 and older, are held to a standard of 0.080 grams percent.

Several other factors and “timing” issues (for when the test is taken) are part of the implied consent laws in Georgia, but those issues are for other discussions within this website.

The Implied Consent Warning – GA

In Georgia, police officers who arrest a motorist for DUI must immediately read the proper language of the implied consent law to the detained driver.  If the officer fails to read the full implied consent warning, or there are any substantive errors in the officer’s recitation, a criminal defense attorney who is a DUI lawyer may be able to have your pending license suspension successfully rescinded (removed) from the GA Dept of Driver Services records. But the only way to determine if this is an option in your DUI case is to speak with a criminal defense attorney who specializes in driving while intoxicated cases, and who deals with Georgia implied consent law issues on a daily basis. If your DUI lawyer makes any errors, Georgia appellate court decisions have basically ruled that it is YOUR PROBLEM, and will not UNDO the license suspension. What better reason to seek out the help of a veteran DUI attorney in Atlanta?

Below is the precise wording of the 3 official Georgia implied consent warnings:

(1) Implied consent notice for suspects under age 21: Georgia law requires you to submit to state-administered chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances for the purpose of determining if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you refuse this testing, your Georgia driver’s license or privilege to drive on the highways of this State may be suspended for a minimum period of one year. Your refusal to submit to the required testing may be offered into evidence against you at trial. If you submit to testing and the results indicate an alcohol concentration of 0.02 grams or more, your Georgia driver’s license or privilege to drive on the highways of this State may be suspended for a minimum period of one year. After first submitting to the required state tests, you are entitled to additional chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances at your own expense and from qualified personnel of your own choosing. Will you submit to the state-administered chemical tests of your (designate which tests) under implied consent law?”

(2) Implied consent notice for suspects age 21 or over: Georgia law requires you to submit to state-administered chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances for the purpose of determining if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you refuse this testing, your Georgia driver’s license or privilege to drive on the highways of this State may be suspended for a minimum period of one year. Your refusal to submit to the required testing may be offered into evidence against you at trial. If you submit to testing and the results indicate an alcohol concentration of 0.08 grams or more, your Georgia driver’s license or privilege to drive on the highways of this State may be suspended for a minimum period of one year. After first submitting to the required state tests, you are entitled to additional chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances at your own expense and from qualified personnel of your own choosing. Will you submit to the state-administered chemical tests of your (designate which tests) under implied consent law?”

(3) Implied consent notice for commercial vehicle driver suspects: Georgia law requires you to submit to state-administered chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances for the purpose of determining if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you refuse this testing, you will be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a minimum period of one year. Your refusal to submit to the required testing may be offered into evidence against you at trial. If you submit to testing and the results indicate the presence of any alcohol, you will be issued an out-of-service order and will be prohibited from operating a motor vehicle for 24 hours. If the results indicate an alcohol concentration of 0.04 grams or more, you will be disqualified from operating a commercial vehicle for a minimum period of one year. After first submitting to the required state tests, you are entitled to additional chemical tests of your blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substances at your own expense and from qualified personnel of your own choosing. Will you submit to the state-administered chemical tests of your (designate which tests) under the implied consent law?”

Commercial Vehicles Are Not All “Big Rig” Trucks

Under this last subsection, Georgia’s driving laws identify which vehicles are classified as “commercial motor vehicles”. One of these types of vehicles is a school bus. Also, a transport van that has 16 or more passengers is categorized as a commercial vehicle. These two types of motor transport are included due to the potential catastrophic loss of life, if children or passengers of any age (on a paid conveyance) are injured or killed. The CDL license is an overlay of a regular license  (or an “endorsement”) that calls for  a more strenuous written and practical driving test. The implied consent law of Georgia does the same thing by allowing less alcohol to be consumed.

How Can a Top DUI Lawyer in Georgia Win a DUI Case Using Implied Consent Laws?

Although the Georgia legislature significantly “watered down” Georgia’s laws on implied consent in March of 1998, the general rule of law to interrogate whether a motorist can lose his or her right to drive in Georgia is “strictly construed” against the government. In the past 50 years, the following FLAWS in police officers’ compliance with GA implied consent rules have resulted in the “chemical test” results (blood, breath, or urine) being excluded from the evidence used by the prosecutor at trial:

  1. Not reading the card at all

  2. Delay in reading the card, instead of immediately after the DUI arrest

  3. Not allowing the drunk driver to change his or her mind, and take the test after first refusing the implied consent test

  4. Not honoring the driver’s “refusal to be tested” and starting the breath test anyway, obtaining test results without consent

  5. Giving extraneous or incorrect additional information beyond the EXACT printed advertisement

  6. Failing to accommodate an independent test request by the driver, after the drunken driver has taken the state test

  7. Not taking the detained DUI suspect to his or her selected location for an independent test, even if out of the county

  8. Coercing the DUI detained driver into taking the test

  9. Obtaining consent from a driver who is too impaired to give consent

  10. Omitting or misstating key parts or portions of the statutory warning that are critical to the advertisement being “meaningful”

These 10 types of errors are just the tip of the iceberg. Many other variations of law enforcement errors can be made, resulting in an implied consent law violation in Georgia.  This is why you need the best DUI attorney at your side, so that your drunk driving defense lawyer can find a way to win your DUI case.

Contact DUI Attorney William C. “Bubba” Head to Get Started

As you can see, knowing your implied consent rights can be important to winning. Because the opportunity to appeal your license being suspended is so short, you must act quickly on any GA DDS hearing request. Atlanta attorney William C. “Bubba” Head has handled countless administrative license hearings all over the State of Georgia, and has saved thousands of clients’ driving privileges.

His Atlanta DUI law firm can look into your implied consent appeal to uncover evidence that can help you keep your driver’s license. Whether your arrest is a DUI Atlanta arrest or in ANY OTHER Georgia location, our lawyers can help you.

Call 40-year veteran Atlanta DUI attorney Bubba Head today and get honest answers to all your questions. Tell us everything that happened and everything you remember about your DUI arrest. The sooner you call us, the better chance we have to win your case.

Remember, you only have 10 DAYS to file a license suspension appeal, or your driver’s license will be suspended for up to one year! Talk to Bubba Head, Larry Kohn, or Cory Yager now. We are available 24 hours a day, weekends, and all major holidays. (404) 567-5515

To begin the license appeal process, please complete our online case evaluation form now for your FREE professional DUI case evaluation.

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