You may know that you can decline a roadside Breathalyzer test if you’re suspected of drunk driving. These tests are often not all that accurate, and you don’t have to take one. The officer may ask you to do field sobriety tests instead, or may simply decide that they already have enough reason to at least make an arrest based on the way you were driving and their impression of your condition upon talking to you.
But what if you are asked to take a chemical breath test after you get to the police station? Can you also refuse to take it? Or can the police order you to submit to this test, even though they couldn’t with the preliminary test?
You can refuse, but there are consequences
The police cannot force you to take the test and you do have the right to refuse. That does not mean that the choice comes without consequences, though, and you shouldn’t see refusal as a guaranteed way to put the whole issue behind you without penalty.
For instance, the refusal to take a Breathalyzer test could result in the loss of your driver’s license. You could argue that you aren’t intoxicated and shouldn’t lose the right to drive, but implied consent laws mean that the authorities can in fact take your license for refusing the test.
Drunk driving charges can result in a complicated legal process
As you can see, the drunk driving laws may be more complex and nuanced than you first assumed. If you are facing charges or have been arrested on suspicion of drunk driving, you need to know all of the proper steps to take.