Question: What does implied consent mean in Maryland?
Answer: Well, first of all, when you get your drivers license and you leave the MVA with that shiny card in your hand, part of the documents that a driver signed off on was Maryland’s Implied Consent Document. And that means that when you’re pulled over for a traffic event and the officer has probable cause or reasonable, articulable suspicion to believe that you’ve been operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, the consent law indicates that you have agreed to blow in Maryland’s breath machine at the police station. This is different, of course, than the preliminary breath test, which we’ll talk about in a different note. But at the police station when you’re asked to blow, you’re supposed to blow.
Now, in order for that to be valid, the police officer does have to read you your rights under Maryland’s DR-15 form, which can be found in Transportation Article 16205.1. Your DR-15 rights are extensive rights that you have, and what’s going to happen to you if you blow and if you don’t blow. So, for example, if you blow over a 0.08% to a 0.14%, you face losing your driver’s license or your privilege to drive for 45 days. And if you blow above a 0.15%, you face a 90-day suspension, which is modifiable by an interlock. But, the key is, with implied consent, it means that you have impliedly given consent that you will blow. And if you choose not to blow, which you can do on State’s property, there will be consequences to that decision. That’s Maryland’s implied consent law.