DUI Breathalyzer Test

Drunk Driving & DWI conviction

How To Handle A Breathalyzer Test: Should You Take The Chance Or Politely Refuse

Ask a DUI lawyer what question they are most often asked by potential clients and they’ll probably say this:

“Should I or should I not submit to a breathalyzer test?”

The answer they typically give is that there is no right or wrong answer to that kind of question.

Should You Blow Or Not Blow Into A Breathalyzer

Most people are not sure whether they should or should not blow into a breathalyzer. What happens if you do decide to blow into the machine though? If the results come up less than the 0.8 percent legal limit, you have a much better shot at getting the DUI charge dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense. If, however, the breathalyzer reading is above the 0.8 legal limit, you’re just giving evidence to the state prosecutor to use against you in a court of law.

So what happens if you decide not to blow into the breathalyzer? The first thing to understand is that not doing the breathalyzer denies the state attorney their evidence to use against you in court. However, you’re also giving them complete freedom to argue that you had a guilty conscience.

What Should You Do Then?

You were taught in school that you have the right not to incriminate yourself. This means you can choose not to give additional evidence to police that could be used against you in a court of law.

If you are truly drunk, you could politely refuse their request to do the field sobriety test. Now, the consequences of the denial are different for every case. However, you are depriving the state its most damning piece of evidence they want against you. Your DUI attorney can build a stronger defense and seek a reduced sentence for you.

Of course, it’s a bit of a different matter if you’ve been taken to the police station for at least one of the sobriety tests. In the majority of states, the outcome of these tests will be what matters for your case. If you refuse to submit to the field sobriety tests or breathalyzer, you could have your license suspended for a year. Keep in mind that the suspension is DMV related and not related to the criminal charge.

How Can You Avoid A DUI Conviction

You have just one goal when you’re faced with a DUI arrest: to make sure that you don’t incriminate yourself, which can strengthen the state’s case. Whatever the consequences you face in terms of not blowing into the breathalyzer, they are certainly more pleasant than what the reading “might have been” on the machine.

To make sure you get the best defense possible, be sure to speak to a DUI attorney in your state right away. Regardless of what decision you make about the breathalyzer machine, you still need a good attorney who will assist you in avoiding a costly (and perhaps problematic) DUI conviction.


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