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An overview of California DUI testing methods


Did you know that you can choose the type of blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test the police perform if stopped for a DUI in California? State vehicle code 23612 VC informs the public of this and other rights when facing a DUI arrest.

As you may know, California is an implied consent state, but many residents don’t really know what this means. It means that when driving your vehicle, you are also consenting to chemical testing during a lawful stop on suspicion of DUI.

Vehicle code 23612 gives you choices

Most laws contain complex legal language and 23612 is no exception. It is wise to read the law yourself, but the section below contains several details about California BAC testing.

  • You have the right to choose between a breath or blood test.
  • You don’t have the right to legal representation during chemical testing.
  • You may still have to have a blood test if officers suspect drug intoxication.
  • You must provide a urine test if blood and breath testing methods are unavailable.
  • You may refuse chemical testing, but it will likely be used against you in legal proceedings.
  • If you refuse to submit to any form of BAC testing, officers can get a warrant to arrange a forced blood draw.
  • If you are a hemophiliac or taking anticoagulant drugs, you are automatically exempt from submitting to a blood test.

Why is it so important to know about these testing methods? The way police officers test for DUI is often the hinge point in overcoming these charges. While you don’t want to antagonize law enforcement personnel, exercising your rights is something you can do to possibly improve your situation.

Learning more about DUI laws is also wise when facing an arrest.

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