Refusing a Breathalyzer Test
You are driving home from a night out with some friends. You have had a few drinks but you feel fine to drive. Halfway home, you see you the blue lights behind you. Immediately, you pull over and start get out your license and registration. The officer comes to your window, asks if you have been drinking, and then asks you to submit to a breathalyzer test. While it may be very tempting to refuse, it is extremely important to understand seriousness of such a decision.
By operating a motor vehicle in the state of Illinois, you are presumed to have granted your implied consent to submit to blood alcohol content (BAC) chemical testing. As such, the office of the secretary of state may impose administrative penalties on drivers fail or refuse testing. While refusing a test is not technically a criminal offense, the administrative penalties can still have a tremendous impact on your life.
If you refuse a BAC chemical test, your driving privileges will be automatically suspended for one year. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you may be eligible for driving relief after 30 days. A second or subsequent refusal during a future DUI stop will result in a statutory summary suspension of your driving privileges for 3 years with no relief available.
While a simple license suspension may seem like a preferable alternative to a DUI conviction, it is important to remember that the DUI case against you can proceed without test results. The officer may present his or her observations, along with other proof of your impairment. In fact, your refusal to submit to testing may be presented as a suggestion that you knew you were too drunk to drive.
The criminal penalties associated with a DUI conviction would be imposed in addition to the statutory summary suspension for refusing the test. This means that you could be feeling the effects of your decision for many years to come.
If you have failed or refused BAC chemical testing and are facing charges of driving under the influence, you need the help of an experienced Will County criminal defense lawyer. At the Law Office of Jack L. Zaremba, we understand how to work within the law to find a solution that minimizes the impact to your life and your future. Call us today at 815-740-4025 to schedule your free, confidential consultation and put our knowledge and skill to work for you.