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Article
June 14, 1958

CHEMICAL TESTS FOR INTOXICATION— "IMPLIED CONSENT" LAWS

JAMA. 1958;167(7):865. doi:10.1001/jama.1958.02990240065012

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Abstract

Ever since 1939, when the first statute was enacted in Indiana specifically permitting the use in evidence of the results of chemical tests for intoxication, both prosecuting attorneys and defense attorneys have been concerned with the attitude of the courts toward the constitutional issues involved. Primarily, these issues have related to problems of self-incrimination, search and seizure, and due process of law. Proponents of the use of chemical tests have been diligently seeking some method whereby a properly conceived statute could obviate the subsequent raising of these questions in court.

As early as 1942 the American Medical Association considered the possible utilization of existing state drivers licensing laws as a mechanism for obtaining the necessary consent to the performance of the test on persons suspected of driving while under the influence of alcohol. Inquiry was made into the possibility of conditioning a person's privilege to use the highways in his

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