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Implied Consent in West Virginia

Understand Your Rights & Obligations as a Driver

Implied consent laws are little-known state laws that were enacted to force drivers in West Virginia who are arrested for DUI to submit to blood, breath, or urine testing to reveal how much alcohol or drugs are in their system. It was originally based on the concept that by using the roads of West Virginia, you had given your consent to be tested if you were lawfully arrested and suspected of driving under the influence.

Today, the state’s implied consent is written into your driver’s license application and it tells you about this “obligation” to submit to testing or potentially lose the right to drive in West Virginia. It is important for all drivers to understand implied consent.


If you have questions about implied consent in West Virginia, contact The Wagner Law Firm at (304) 461-6000.


What Happens If I Refuse Testing?

If you refuse blood, breath, or urine testing after your arrest, you could face license revocation. You’ll also lose your ability to take advantage of the deferral program. Because the state has a special law for those first-time offenders, eligibility for the West Virginia DUI deferral program hinges upon whether the driver submitted to the requested test or not.

I refused to take a chemical test. What does that mean for me?

After being arrested for a DUI, West Virginia implied consent law requires you to take a secondary chemical test to determine your BAC level. These tests include a breath test, blood test, or urine test. If you refused any one of these tests, the DMV can suspend your license for 45 days, implement a year with a blow tube installed in your vehicle, or one year no driving at all. This is called a DUI refusal. If you have multiple DUI convictions, your license could be suspended indefinitely.

Can I consult with a DUI attorney before deciding to take a chemical test?

In West Virginia, you do not have the right to speak with an attorney before deciding whether or not to submit to a chemical test. The police officer is not legally required to let you call an attorney during or after your arrest for impaired driving. Once at the jail, you will be able to call your lawyer. If you call Harley Wagner, he can help you get released from jail faster.

If My Attorney Files the Implied Consent Appeal, Can I Keep Driving?

It depends. Under DUI laws enacted in 2016, a “DUI refusal” to submit to testing under West Virginia implied consent laws is at special risk. This is even more critical if the arrested driver is a repeat offender.

Ensure an Accurate Address on Your License

Approximately 30 to 40 days after your date of arrest, an “Order of Revocation Notice” will be sent to you at the address on your license, as taken down by the arresting officer. This letter is mailed by the West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles as part of the two-part DUI consequences required by law.

You or your DUI lawyer must ensure the address on your license is correct or you will not receive this important order of license revocation notice. If your current mailing address is different than the one on your plastic driver’s license, call a West Virginia DUI attorney immediately to have him or her handle this important aspect of your case.

Don’t lose the right to drive due to simple laziness or ignorance of the law – the DMV simply does NOT alter its strict rules for such oversight.

Discuss Implied Consent Laws with Harley Wagner

If you need help you save your license and obtain a favorable outcome in your DUI case, Harley Wagner is a DUI specialist and highly rated criminal defense attorney who can help. The Wagner Law Firm – serving Berkeley, Jefferson, and Monongalia counties and all of West Virginia – can guide you down the path to a positive resolution.


Questions about your case? Contact us by dialing (304) 461-6000. Your case assessment is free of charge.


Case Results

With decades of legal experience and over 800 hours of DUI defense training, Harley Wagner knows how to fight DUI charges effectively. Read The Wagner Law Firm's recent case results to learn more about Harley's past successes.
  • Dismissed DUI 2nd offense (Martinsburg, WV)
  • Dismissed DUI 1st (Morgantown, WV)
  • Dismissed DUI 1st (Morgantown, WV)
  • Dismissed .08 DUI Causing Death case (Clarksburg, WV)
  • Dismissed DUI 1st (Martinsburg, WV)
  • Dismissed DUI 1st (Morgantown, WV)
  • Reduced to Misdemeanor .14 Felony DUI Causing Death Case (Martinsburg, WV)
  • Not Guilty DUI Felony 3rd Offense (Berkeley Springs, WV)
  • Not Guilty DUI 1st. (Martinsburg, WV)
  • Charge Reduced Aggravated DUI 1st (Morgantown, WV)
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Why Trust Harley Wagner?

  • Over 20 Years of Experience
  • More Than 2,500 DUI Cases Handled
  • Performed 800 Hours of DUI Defense Training
  • Award Winning Representation
  • Faculty Member at DUI Defense Lawyers Association
  • Author of West Virginia's Preeminent DUI Book: West Virginia DUI Defense: The Law and Practice
Looking Forward to Helping You

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