Pros And Cons Of Refusing A Breathalyzer Test

When you are suspected of driving while under the influence, you may be required to perform a breathalyzer test. The test can measure the amount of alcohol that is in your breath to predict whether you were driving under the influence. However, you have the right to refuse a breathalyzer test. The following are arguments over whether you should or shouldn't refuse the test. 

What Happens When You Blow

If you choose to blow into the breathalyzer test and you have been drinking, the breathalyzer will detect this and the officer will then have probable cause to arrest you. Even if you are sober, you may still want to refuse a breathalyzer test. Sometimes, breathalyzer tests are not calibrated properly and may produce a false positive. 

Refusing the Test

If you refuse the breathalyzer test, you may be required to perform a simple test designed to determine if you are inebriated. If you refuse to perform one of these tests, the officer will look for whatever excuse he or she can find to arrest you. 

When the officer finds an excuse to arrest you, he or she may then require that you submit to an intoxilyzer test. If you choose to submit to the test, the officer can seek to have you prosecuted based on the results of the test or based on his opinion through a testimony. 

Consequences for Refusal

If you refuse to perform any tests, you will suffer consequences that are based on the state you reside in. Your refusal can be used in court against you. Often, you will have your driver's license suspended. You may also be required to spend a minimum amount of time in jail. However, if it cannot be proven that you were driving under the influence, these penalties might be much lower than the penalties for a DWI.

No Refusal States

Some states have a no refusal law. Under these circumstances, if you refuse to submit to a test, the officer must obtain a warrant before performing the test. If you still refuse, you may be held in contempt of court and face additional charges. You may also be forced to submit to a blood test.

Regardless of the decision you make, you must seek assistance from a DWI defense attorney when you are accused of driving under the influence. You may be able to have your charges dropped or reduced with the right defense.