WELLINGTON FL REFUSAL TO SUBMIT TO A BREATH TEST DEFENSE LAWYERS
The defense attorneys at Arnesen Law represent clients charged with driving under the influence (DUI), refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test, and leaving the scene of an accident in Wellington, Belle Glade, and West Palm Beach Florida. In fact, the firm’s founder, Jay Arnesen, devotes the entirety of his practice to criminal and DUI defense in South Florida.
Arnesen accumulated extensive knowledge of the specific components of DUI cases during his service as a former police officer. With advanced training in DUI detection, standardized field sobriety tests, and breath testing, he has developed a highly sophisticated lens through which to analyze these cases in order to formulate the best possible defense for his clients. Arnesen Law’s Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale office locations provide the firm’s lawyers with accessibility to courts across South Florida, allowing them to represent clients charged in a wide variety of jurisdictions. Contact these skilled legal representatives anytime at 561-419-9630 to receive a free initial consultation.
“As a former police officer, I used to help prosecute these charges for the State. Now, let me use my training and experience to combat these charges for you in court.” Jay Arnesen, Esq., DUI Defense Attorney
Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test – Florida Statutes Section 316.1932
Chapter 316, Section 1932 of the Florida Statutes provides information pertaining to the administration of tests for alcohol, chemical substances, or controlled substances. According to this section, a person gives implied consent to submit to a breath test if he or she chooses to drive a vehicle in Florida. As a result, if an officer requests that you submit to a breath test and you are found guilty of refusal to comply, you will be subject to a 1-year period of driver’s license suspension for a first offense. Further, those convicted of a second or subsequent offense for refusal to submit to a test are required to forfeit their driving privileges for 18 months. This also results in a misdemeanor conviction and the penalties associated with these offenses.
Below is the specific language included under Section 316.1932:
(1) (a) Any person who accepts the privilege extended by the laws of this state of operating a motor vehicle within this state is, by so operating such vehicle, deemed to have given his or her consent to submit to an approved chemical test or physical test including, but not limited to, an infrared light test of his or her breath for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content of his or her blood or breath if the person is lawfully arrested for any offense allegedly committed while the person was driving or was in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcoholic beverages.
The chemical or physical breath test must be incidental to a lawful arrest and administered at the request of a law enforcement officer who has reasonable cause to believe such person was driving or was in actual physical control of the motor vehicle within this state while under the influence of alcoholic beverages. The administration of a breath test does not preclude the administration of another type of test.
The person shall be told that his or her failure to submit to any lawful test of his or her breath will result in the suspension of the person’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle for a period of 1 year for a first refusal, or for a period of 18 months if the driving privilege of such person has been previously suspended as a result of a refusal to submit to such a test or tests, and shall also be told that if he or she refuses to submit to a lawful test of his or her breath and his or her driving privilege has been previously suspended for a prior refusal to submit to a lawful test of his or her breath, urine, or blood, he or she commits a misdemeanor in addition to any other penalties.
Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test – Potential Penalties
- First Offense Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test: 1-year driver’s license suspension
- Second Offense Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test: 18-month driver’s license suspension, misdemeanor conviction and associated penalties
Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test – Administrative Suspensions, Formal Review Hearings, and Hardship Licenses
It is important to note that if you have been arrested for DUI in Florida, you are entitled to request a formal review hearing to contest the administrative suspension of your driver’s license within 10 days of the initial arrest. An experienced defense attorney can assist you in obtaining a temporary permit to drive for 42 days, which will allow you continue driving while your lawyer fights the administrative suspension.
- First Offense Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test: Failure to request a hearing within the 10-day window means your 1-year license suspension will begin immediately, the first 90 days of which it is unlawful for you to drive at all. Following the 90-day period, known as a “hard suspension” you become eligible to apply for a hardship license, which will allow you to drive solely for employment or business purposes.
- Second Offense Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test: Failure to request a hearing within the 10-day window means your 18-month license suspension will begin immediately, during which it is unlawful for you to drive for any reason. It is particularly crucial to enlist an attorney who can assist you in this type of case, as it will enable you to continue driving pending the hearing date. Even more importantly, if your defense lawyer is successful in invalidating your suspension, your driving privileges will remain in effect as he or she defends you against the criminal charges.
Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test – Implications for a DUI Conviction
Refusing to submit to a breath test does not negate the possibility of a DUI conviction. In fact, it may cause greater difficulties, as the prosecutor can argue that your knowledge of your own intoxication prompted your decision to refuse the test. In addition, because it is more difficult to prove DUI cases involving defendants who refuse to submit to a breath test, Florida Law mandates a lengthier period of license suspension for those convicted of refusal.
Contact Our Palm Beach County Refusal to Submit to a Breath Test Defense Lawyers for a Free Consultation
If you have been arrested for DUI involving a refusal to submit to chemical testing of your breath, blood or urine, contact Arnesen Law to speak with a knowledgable DUI defense attorney who can help you fight the penalties you are facing. Free consultations are provided via phone anytime by contacting 561-419-9630.