Breath Test Refusal Lawyer


DUI Attorneys Defending Clients Against Breath Test Refusal in Ann Arbor, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Lansing, and Throughout Michigan with Implied Consent

In the state of Michigan, anyone who operates a motor vehicle on a public roadway has given his or her permission, or consent, to be chemically tested if pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance. Most drivers are never aware of the fact that when applying for your driver's license, the documents you sign include an agreement with Michigan's Implied Consent law. While you may decline to submit to blood, breath, or chemical testing, there will be consequences to face in doing so.

At Grabel & Associates, we know that in most cases, those arrested for DUI or OWI offenses are not familiar with implied consent laws, and therefore do not realize the serious implications of refusal. To put it in simple terms, if you refuse to take a breath test following an arrest for a DUI or drunk driving offense, you may face penalties, which are more severe than, if you had consented to the test. We understand that it can catch you off guard to be caught in this situation. If you have been consuming alcohol, should you consent to the breath test knowing you will not pass? Will it mean less evidence against you if you refuse a breath, blood, or chemical test? Our Michigan DUI attorneys understand your fears and concerns; we fight diligently for those accused of DUI, including those who refuse testing.

Michigan's Implied Consent Law

You may be curious as to why such a law exists. Simply put, law makers want to have a stronger case against those who are arrested on suspicion of DUI or drunk driving. Chemical tests are a method of proving that you were operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or illegal substances. These blood, breath, or other chemical tests measure BAC, or blood alcohol content. In Michigan, the legal limit for BAC is 0.08%. If your results prove to be over this limit, you may be charged with unlawful bodily alcohol level, or UBAL.

Breath Test Refusal

If you are pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence and refuse a breath test, you may face serious consequences which include:

  • Immediate suspension of your driver's license for one year
  • No eligibility for a restricted license without appealing with the circuit court
  • Six points assigned to your driving record, even if you are not convicted of drunk driving

These penalties apply to a first-time implied consent offender. Should you refuse a breath test within seven years of the first offense, your driver's license will be suspended for double the time, or two years. It is critical you speak with a skilled Michigan implied consent suspensions lawyer right away.

Can Breath Test Refusal Be Used as Evidence?

Absolutely. Unfortunately, jurors often assume that individuals who do not comply with the implied consent law must be guilty of drinking and driving, otherwise they would have submitted to testing. Although the jurors will be instructed that evidence of refusal is for the purpose of concluding a chemical test was offered, jurors are still human, and will still question why you refused the breath test.

Roadside Testing and Implied Consent

The implied consent laws do not apply to roadside breath tests often administered by police officers in the course of a stop. Implied consent laws apply to breathalyzer tests given at the police station. To refuse the Preliminary Breath Test given at the time you were pulled over is considered a civil infraction; however the consequences are less serious. It is important you be aware that if you do refuse the breathalyzer test administered at the station, police may secure a search warrant which means you must submit to testing. The only way this may be avoided is if it can be proven that sufficient cause for issuance of a search warrant did not exist.

Contact Michigan DUI Attorney A. Scott Grabel Today

Breath test refusal does not necessarily result in driver's license suspension. If you refuse the breath test, an implied consent hearing will determine whether you had a reasonable or legitimate reason for refusing the test. It's also important to note that should you change your mind and decide to take the breath test within a short amount of time, police officers are required to allow you to do so. Ultimately, you may not face enhanced penalties if police refuse your request.

Whether you have been arrested or charged with a DUI offense or violated the implied consent laws, contact a seasoned Michigan drunk driving lawyer with our firm immediately. At Grabel & Associates it is our mission to provide every client with outstanding legal support and representation throughout every step of the process. Contact us now by calling our toll-free number at 1-800-783-4448.