Many people in Arizona are confused about whether or not you can refuse a breath test or refuse a blood test after a DUI stop. When people are arrested for suspected DUIs, police officers will ask them to submit to a chemical test to test their breath, blood, or urine for the presence of alcohol and its concentration.
While many people do not want to submit to chemical tests, refusing to submit a blood sample drawn by a phlebotomist or a breath sample on a breathalyzer test can result in consequences to their driving privileges and could potentially detrimentally impact their DUI cases.
Here is some information about refusals and what they can mean for a DUI case in Arizona from the Shah Law Firm.
Arizona’s Implied Consent Law
Under ARS 28-1321, Arizona has enacted an implied consent law. The state deems all motorists who drive vehicles in the state to have given their implied consent to chemical testing to check for the presence of alcohol or drugs in their systems.
When a person refuses or is unable to consent to, a test or tests of the person’s blood, breath, urine, or other bodily substance for the purpose of determining alcohol concentration or drug content, they are given an admin per se form. This is a pink piece of paper. If you were not given this form, let your DUI attorney know immediately.
Refusing to submit a blood or urine sample or refusing a breath test with the breathalyzer machine can trigger consequences from the Arizona Motor Vehicle Department.
If you refuse a breath, blood, or urine test, your license can immediately be suspended for 12 months regardless of the outcome of your DUI case. If you refuse a chemical test a second time within seven years, your license can be suspended for 24 months.
If you refuse to submit to a chemical test, a police officer can request a warrant to conduct the test anyway. You can still be prosecuted for a DUI based on the officer’s observations of you and your driving. The prosecution can also use a refusal of a chemical test as evidence against you in your DUI case.
Once you finish the administrative suspension period of your driver’s license, you will have to complete a drug and alcohol program before your license can be reinstated.