Many people make the mistake of thinking that they have a Fourth Amendment right against providing breath samples if arrested for DWI. In New Jersey, this is simply not true.
New Jersey has something called the implied consent law. 39:4-50.2(a) reads: “Any person who operates a motor vehicle on any public road, street or highway or quasi-public area in this State shall be deemed to have given his consent to the taking of samples of his breath for the purpose of making chemical tests to determine the content of alcohol in his blood.”
In other words, once you drive in New Jersey, you have already given consent to provide breath samples if you are suspected of drunk driving.
If an arrestee refuses to give breath samples, he or she can be charged with a refusal violation. This is a serious violation that comes with harsh penalties such as: a 7 month loss of driving privileges, mandatory installation of the ignition interlock device, fines, etc.
If you have been charged with a DWI or refusal violation, it is important to speak to an attorney about the consequences you face as well as any possible defenses you may have available to you.