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What Is the Implied Consent Charge?

In Tennessee, drivers have given their implied consent to taking a chemical test to determine one's blood alcohol level. Here is how it works. If a police officer has reasonable suspicion that a person was driving under the influence of alcohol, a police officer can request they submit to a blood or breath test to determine the alcohol or drug content.

What happens if a person refuses a blood or breath alcohol on a first offense DUI? The police will issue another charge of violation of the implied consent charge. The case will track the DUI charge. If you plead guilty to the DUI charge, the assistant district attorney prosecuting you will normally dismiss the charge. If your case is reduced, the state will insist you plead guilty to the implied consent charge. A conviction of the implied consent charge will result in the loss of your license for one year. However, you are able to apply for a restricted drivers license.

If you fight your DUI charge, the state might insist on hearing the implied consent charge in general sessions court. Tennessee DUI law forces you to have a trial on the implied consent at the general sessions level.