Think Twice Before Refusing a DUI Test


By: Manoj Prasad

By driving in the state, you automatically consent to a chemical test if lawfully arrested for drunk driving.

1. Implied Consent in California

Refusing roadside sobriety or breath tests before arrest is usually not a crime, but it can be used against you in court.

Pre-Arrest Tests

Chemical test refusal after a valid DUI arrest carries consequences under implied consent, even if earlier tests were taken.

Post-Arrest Tests

Refusing testing because of a belief of unlawful arrest is prohibited, although a judge may dismiss charges if the arrest is illegal.

Unlawful Arrest

Police normally let you choose between blood and breath testing, but they may require one in certain cases.

Choosing the Test

Some health conditions may legally excuse refusing blood draws, but not testing altogether; honesty about health conditions is crucial.

Medical Issues

Injuries or unconsciousness do not justify refusal unless unable to give meaningful consent due to these conditions.

Severely Injured or Unconscious

If circumstances beyond your control prevent completing a test, you should get a different test option; deliberately failing equates to refusal.

Failed Completion of a Test

Refusing chemical testing leads to harsher post-conviction penalties, varying based on the number of DUI offenses.

Penalties for Refusing a DUI Test

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Shaheen Manshoory is a trial attorney and State Bar Certified Legal Specialist in criminal defense law. He has established a stellar reputation for litigating complex criminal matters in state, federal, and juvenile courts, including high-profile cases that involve both individuals and organizations.