Refusing DUI Tests in Montgomery County
Very often, DUI convictions hinge on the result of a blood or alcohol test taken shortly after the defendant’s arrest. Alcohol and drug tests can be based on hair samples, Breathalyzer samples, urine samples, or a blood screening.
As licensed drivers, all motorists have given their “implied consent” to a DUI test when they get behind the wheel. As a result, refusing DUI tests in Montgomery County could lead to a license suspension or other penalties, even if there is no actual conviction for a DUI. If you have refused to take a blood, urine, or hair test following a DUI arrest, you may wish to speak with an attorney about your next steps.
Justifiable Reasons for Refusing a Test
In some circumstances, a driver may be justified in refusing to take a DUI test in Montgomery County. One reason for refusing a breath test would be a person not wanting to give incriminating information about themselves to law enforcement. The arrestee would still suffer sanctions through the Motor Vehicle Administration, but they have a right to refuse information or evidence about themselves that might be incriminating.
Additionally, a person might refuse Breathalyzer testing if they felt like they had a medical issue that might give a false positive or inaccurate reading. Drivers should be aware of the administrative sanctions that come with that refusal based on the implied consent law. Usually, those sanctions are reviewed by the police officer on a DR-15 Advise of Rights Form before that police officer offers the test to be administered.
First Time Refusal vs Subsequent Refusals
The first time a person refuses a test, the Motor Vehicle Administration will usually impose a license suspension of a period of 270 days on their privilege to drive. If a driver wishes to modify that 270-day suspension, they can participate in the ignition interlock program for 12 months.
If a person refuses a DUI test for the second or third time, however, they can expect that the sanctions against them will increase. The may not be able to participate in the ignition interlock program and may suffer additional sanctions such as having to have their privilege to drive be reviewed by the Medical Advisory Board, which is a branch of the Motor Vehicle Administration that focuses their attention on whether or not people are medically capable of driving.
DUI Education Course
After a driver refuses to submit to a DUI test, their attorney may recommend that they enroll in a DUI education course. These courses are designed to educate drivers about the dangers of substance abuse, driving under the influence, and failing to cooperate with law enforcement.
In the context of a DUI refusal, enrolling in a DUI education course allows the court to recognize how seriously the defendant has taken the entire event. It can also serve as a very powerful negotiating tool when a defense attorney is working with the prosecutor to reach a resolution in the case, have charges reduced, or have the case dismissed.
Reach out to an Experienced Attorney After a DUI Refusal
If you have refused to take a blood, urine, or another type of test following a DUI arrest, you need experienced legal representation. Refusing a DUI test in Montgomery County could lead to a license suspension that may seriously impact your ability to drive legally. If your refusal was justified, an attorney could work to preserve your driving privileges and minimize the disruption to your life.