DUI Defense if You Refused the Breathalyzer
Depending on your priorities and your circumstances, refusing to submit to testing for alcohol or drugs if you get pulled over may be a wise move. It will improve the chances of beating a DUI conviction, which may be critical for repeat offenses. The downside is that it will be much more difficult (if not impossible) to keep your driving privileges.
In most cases, this important decision is a moot point — the person already (a) blew into the Breathalyzer and was arrested or (b) refused the Breathalyzer and was arrested. We urge you to contact us immediately either way. We can't "put the genie back in the bottle" once a person has submitted to testing, but we can fight the results — and there may still be time to take the test if the person refused.
Drunk Driving Defense Lawyers Who Take the Tough Cases
With offices throughout DuPage County, the DUI defense team at Michael T. Norris, Ltd. and John W. Callahan, Ltd. routinely wins cases that other law firms would consider hopeless. If you or your family member refused the breath test, our attorneys will vigorously fight the DUI criminal charges and the license suspension.
Sobriety Test Refusal and Penalties Under Illinois DUI Law
There is a legal presumption of "implied consent" when you drive a motor vehicle. You are not required to perform field sobriety tests, but you must submit to the official Breathalyzer (or blood or urine sample for drugs) once formally arrested on suspicion of DUI.
Refusal to submit to a chemical test is not a crime, but an administrative offense. The penalty is automatic suspension of your Illinois driver's license, and the suspension is much harsher than for a DUI conviction:
- First test refusal — 12-month suspension
- Subsequent offense — Three-year suspension
- Zero Tolerance (under age 21) — Six-month suspension
- Zero Tolerance second offense — Two-year suspension
Our lawyers can fight the implied consent suspension by proving that the officer did not follow proper procedures, especially if the officer did not explain your implied consent rights. If we do not win your license back, we can usually get you qualified for an MDDP hardship permit.
You Are Not Off the Hook for DUI, But Your Chances Are Better ...
You can still be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) even if police have no Breathalyzer reading. However, without that crucial evidence, the prosecutor will have to depend on the arresting officer's observations and perhaps the squad car video. Our lawyers excel at attacking that evidence on cross-examination. Our goal on a refusal case is dismissal of charges.
Aggressive Defense for a DUI Breathalyzer Refusal
Contact Michael T. Norris, Ltd. and John W. Callahan, Ltd., today. Call us toll free at 1-877-335-6693 or contact us online for a free and confidential consultation. Our phones are answered 24 hours a day.