If a police officer pulls a driver over in Largo because he/she believes they may be operating their vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, they can request that the individual submit to a breathalyzer test. Whether an individual chooses to comply is up to them. In the State of Florida, while an individual does have the right to refuse a breathalyzer test, they should be aware that by doing so, their actions carry consequences.
Because breathalyzer tests allow officers to determine the level of alcohol an individual has in their system and if they are violating the law, they rely on these tests for their readings. Without a breathalyzer reading, an officer truly doesn’t know how much alcohol an individual has in their system. Therefore, the State of Florida does impose some harsh penalties for those who fail to submit to a breathalyzer test.
Penalties for Refusing to Submit to a Breathalyzer Test
If an individual refuses to submit to a breathalyzer test after being stopped in Largo, FL for DUI, their license will be suspended for one year as per Florida’s implied consent law. According to Florida Statute § 316.1932, any individual who accepts their privilege to drive gives their implied consent to submit to a chemical test if pulled over for DUI.
Now, if an individual is pulled over for a second time for DUI and refuses to submit to a breathalyzer test in Florida, their license would be suspended for 18 months.
If an individual refuses a breathalyzer test, will they still be charged with DUI?
If an officer has reason to believe an individual was operating their vehicle while under the influence, whether they submitted to a breathalyzer or not, they can still be charged with DUI. However, that doesn’t mean they will be convicted.
If an individual is convicted of DUI and it is their first offense, they could potentially face the following penalties1:
- Having their license suspended for one year.
- Having to pay a fine of at least $500 and up to $1,000.
- Having to serve up to six months in prison.
Anytime an individual is charged with DUI, it is strongly recommended that they retain a Largo, FL DUI lawyer. The DUI lawyers at Trevena | James, Attorneys At Law will help them understand the charges they are up against and the penalties they face if they refused to submit to a breathalyzer test.
With its office based in Largo Florida, Trevena | James, Attorneys At Law primarily practices in Pinellas, Hillsborough, and Pasco County, and throughout the state of Florida.
Trevena | James, Attorneys At Law is located at:
801 W Bay Drive, Suite 509
Largo, FL 33770