Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense & Personal Injury Attorneys
Can I Be Convicted of DUI If I Refuse a Breath Test?

Can I Be Convicted of DUI If I Refuse a Breath Test?

To blow or not to blow? This seems to be the question on everyone’s mind after being arrested for DUI. While some people choose not to take a breathalyzer test in the hope that a lack of chemical evidence will bode well for them at trial, it is important to understand that this does not guarantee a not guilty verdict. Many times, the prosecutor will use your refusal to cooperate as evidence in their case. They may pose questions like “Why would the defendant refuse to take the test if they hadn’t been drinking?”

To a jury of your peers, this could sound like incriminating evidence. While a lack of chemical evidence will certainly make it harder for the prosecutor to secure a conviction, you should not rely on this as a winning defense. You should also know that, regardless of the outcome of your criminal trial, you will be penalized for refusing to take the test. According to Florida’s implied consent law, you do not have the right to refuse a chemical test once you have been lawfully arrested by an officer who has probable cause.

The penalties for refusing to take a chemical test in Florida include:

  • First refusal: one-year driver’s license suspension
  • Second refusal: 18-month driver’s license suspension
  • Third refusal: 18-month driver’s license suspension

Can an officer physically compel me to take a BAC test?

Although it is against the implied consent law to refuse a chemical test once you have been arrested for driving under the influence, an officer cannot forcefully compel you to do so – in most cases. There are certain exceptions, which means that there is more than one answer to this question. If you are unconscious, for example, the state has the power to administer a blood test. This is true even if you haven’t been formally arrested.

On the other hand, you also have the right to ask for a blood, breath or urine test if you are arrested for DUI and the officer has not already asked you to take one. Once you ask, a police officer is legally required to give you a test. This could help your case if you were mistakenly arrested for drunk driving or “drugged driving” and you want to prove your side of the story before the situation gets worse. After all, that is your legal right.

Call Our Firm 24/7 for a Free DUI Consultation

If you were recently arrested for DUI in Fort Lauderdale or a surrounding area, Rudenberg and Glasser, P.A. should be your first call. We are available to our clients 24/7, which means that we will be there for you when you need us most. Just because you failed a breath or blood test does not necessarily mean that you will be found guilty, so it is important that you get started on building a successful defense immediately.

To discuss your case with a Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyer, schedule a free consultation with Rudenberg and Glasser, P.A. today. Calls are answered 24/7!

Categories:

Our Victories

  • Not Guilty, Acquitted at Trial Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon

    Outcome: Client was alleged to have used his vehicle to strike victim, and there was video of the incident which could have been interpreted to actually show the crime. The state was offering significant prison time before trial. By meticulous planning and strategic cross-examination to expose the motives and fabrications by the alleged victim, and an eyewitness in support of the alleged victim, Rudenberg & Glasser convinced a jury to acquit the client and avoid a mandatory long prison sentence.

  • Domestic Violence
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser went to trial and were able to show during cross-examination that the alleged victim was the aggressor and that the client acted in self-defense. The jury returned a not guilty verdict almost immediately following trial.
  • Domestic Violence With 911 Call and Pictures
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser took the case to trial after fleshing out inconsistencies in the alleged victim's account. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty and the client's unblemished record was preserved.
  • False Arrest

    Outcome: Attorney Glasser was able to show with video footage that his client did not commit the alleged offense and furthermore, the police officer who ordered his arrest was negligent in his investigation and improperly supervised.

    Read more about this story on the Sun Sentinel.

  • Probation Only Federal Conspiracy to Commit Mail & Wire Fraud

    Outcome: Through compelling sentencing memorandum and passionate oral argument, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to convince the federal court judge to sentence their client to treatment for substance abuse, and no incarceration, even though the client had a lengthy criminal history and the Government was seeking prison time.

  • Felony DUI: Client was in an Accident and Left the Scene
    Outcome: Rudenberg & Glasser filed a compelling motion to suppress evidence based on law enforcement's actions during the investigation. Rudenberg & Glasser were able to persuade the prosecutor prior to the motion to suppress hearing that the charge should be broken down from a felony to a misdemeanor and the client was offered probation instead of the previously sought prison sentence.
  • Final Injunction Hearing
    Outcome: Client desperately needed to avoid a final injunction on his record. Rudenberg & Glasser defended him at the hearing and proved that the Petitioner was not in fear for her safety. The judge dismissed the injunction.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanor: Resisting Police Officer Without Violence
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg presented evidence that the police officer’s version of events was not credible, and that accusations were made to justify excessive use of force by police officer. Jury returned a verdict of not guilty in less than five minutes.
  • First-Degree Misdemeanors: DUI & Possession of Cannabis
    Outcome: Mr. Rudenberg won a motion arguing the DUI checkpoint was conducted in violation of the Fourth Amendment, and the Judge entered an order suppressing all evidence. Case was dropped by the State, and client avoided a mandatory conviction for DUI, as well as mandatory fines and license suspensions.
  • $250,000 Pre-Trial Personal Injury

    Outcome: Client was injured by a malfunctioning door, requiring stitches and leaving a scar on client's knee. There were limited medical bills and no surgeries, but through extremely challenging and successful negotiations, Rudenberg & Glasser were able to secure a settlement of $250,000.

What Our Clients Are Saying

We go above and beyond to be there for clients to provide them with the best outcome possible.
  • “The amount of respect and empathy Attorney Rudenberg has for his clients can not be described in words.”

    C J

  • “If I would need your service in the future I will definitely reach out to you again no matter the distance.”

    A.M.

  • “They will give you honest, truthful, realistic counsel and they will fight hard for you; as they did for me.”

    Donovan

  • “I would recommend them to anyone that’s looking for someone that really cares!”

    R.N.

  • “Professional, Reliable and Supportive”

    DG

  • “If you live a lifetime, you will never meet a more sincere, heartfelt, loving, caring person than Mike Glasser.”

    Becca

  • “Michael jumped through hoops to give me the defense I deserved and I will always be grateful. Michael and Eric are not just Lawyers, they are friends and will look out for your best interest!”

    G.W.

  • “A great legal team”

    A. T.

  • “Worked with me through every step of the case and got my name cleared!”

    N.S.

  • “Here to help you at all costs!”

    L.L.

  • “If anyone, family or friends, should get into trouble we know who to call!”

    Parent of Charles C.

  • “Provided a High Level of Support & Skill”

    DUI Client

  • “I’ve used Mike and Eric for my cases since 2012.”

    J.R

  • “It's nice to know that you actually cared and it didn't seem like this case was just another folder.”

    John J.

  • “Very professional very honest and reliable, cannot thank them enough.”

    D Gonzalez