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Breath tests: Don’t refuse unless you want to lose your license

On Behalf of | Apr 30, 2019 | DWI

You were stopped by police unexpectedly, so it’s not surprising that you were offended when they asked that you take a breath test. You had a drink or two, but you didn’t think it was enough to affect your driving. You don’t even believe you did anything to cause them to pull you over, but they claimed that you were speeding.

You want to refuse to take the test out of pride, but it’s honestly better to take the breath test instead of rejecting it. With a breath test, you can show that you aren’t intoxicated. If you refuse it, you’ll automatically face penalties.

Here’s why refusing a breath test isn’t going to help you

Refusing a breath test isn’t going to help your case if you’re accused of a DWI. Why? States have implied consent laws. When you received your license, you essentially agreed to take a breath test upon request. If you decide not to take the test, then you’ll lose your license.

New York is notoriously harsh on those who refuse a breath test. You can lose your license for up to a year, which means that you might find yourself with no way to get where you need to go.

While taking the breath test might reveal that you had a drink or two and show that it’s possible you are somewhat intoxicated, the likelihood of getting a DWI is low unless your blood alcohol content is over .08%.

What should you do if you’re asked for a breath sample?

Unless you want to lose your license for the next year, it’s a wise choice to take the test. If you are arrested as a result of that test, then you have the option to contact your attorney to begin looking into your case.

Is there any time when you shouldn’t take a breath test?

The only time you might want to avoid taking it is if you’re legitimately intoxicated well over the aggravated DWI limits. In that case, the penalties could exceed those you’d face with a refused breath test, so you can make the decision on whether you should or shouldn’t refuse the test at that time.

If you were not pulled over legally or the test wasn’t administered correctly, there is a chance that any charges you may face could be dropped. Although officers have a right to ask for a breath test, they still need a legitimate reason for pulling you over. If they don’t, then the evidence they have may not be able to be used against you.