Can you refuse DUI testing during a traffic stop?

On Behalf of | Oct 11, 2021 | DUI

Say an officer pulls you over on suspicion of driving under the influence. If they find further reason to conduct an investigation upon stopping you, they might then administer a blood alcohol content (BAC) detection test. Breath analysis tests serve as one of the most common, but you may face field sobriety tests or blood analysis, too.

The main question most people have is: do you need to submit to these tests? Or do you have a right to refuse?

Who consents to DUI tests?

According to Florida Legislature, anyone with a Florida driver’s license gives their consent automatically to submit to DUI testing. On top of that, anyone who uses the roads in Florida to drive also automatically agrees to submit to DUI testing upon their use of said roads. This means even if you come from another state, you can still end up forced to take a DUI test in Florida.

You can refuse to submit, but it will come with repercussions that the officer must inform you of. Before administering the test or reacting to a potential refusal to submit, they must let you know what happens in the event of refusal, including the fact that you could lose your driver’s license for a year.

Knowing the consequences

They must also let you know of the penalties you face if you previously refused a DUI test. This can include suspension of your license for up to 18 months, along with other potential charges for misdemeanor crimes.

Finally, refusal of a test can still end up being used against you in court as evidence. It is admissible and prosecutors may sometimes use it as a sign of guilt, which could end in you facing DUI penalties anyway on top of the penalties for refusing a test.