You may be stopped by a law enforcement officer who believes you are driving under the influence (DUI) in California. In this situation, you may be asked to perform a blood alcohol content (BAC) test to determine if you are inebriated.
It’s normal to wonder what will happen if you refuse this DUI blood test. Let the Simmrin Law Group help you review your rights as they relate to DUI blood tests. You can also consider the legal outcomes for refusing an assessment by calling us.
Understand DUI Blood Tests in California
BAC blood tests in California are generally only used after you are arrested. Blood tests – which involve taking a sample of your blood to check for the presence of alcohol – are not used in pre-arrest testing in most cases.
This means that you are not legally allowed to refuse a DUI blood test. All drivers in California give implied consent to comply with post-arrest BAC tests. You offer consent to testing every time you operate a vehicle in California. This includes any blood, breath, or urine tests requested by a police officer post-arrest.
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Go Over the Penalties for Refusing DUI Blood Tests
Refusing a legally ordered DUI blood test can increase the penalties you face for a DUI conviction. Additionally, you’ll face a mandatory driver’s license suspension from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Your license may be suspended any time you refuse a legally ordered DUI test, even if you successfully resolve your DUI charges.
Your license may be suspended for:
- One year for a first refusal
- Two years for a second refusal
- Three years for a third or subsequent refusal
You may also have extra time added to your jail sentence if you are convicted of a DUI. For example, the court could add:
- Two days for a first DUI with refusal
- Four days for a second DUI with refusal
- Ten days for a third DUI with refusal
- Eighteen days for all subsequent DUIs with refusal
Make sure you take the assertion that you refused a DUI blood test seriously by reaching out to a criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles quickly after your arrest. Call us to speak with the team at the Simmrin Law Group.
Other DUI Chemical Tests in California
As we mentioned, you must always comply with DUI tests ordered after you are arrested. However, California also uses preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) tests in some situations. PAS testing uses a breathalyzer device to measure your BAC before you are arrested.
You are legally allowed to refuse this DUI breath test in some cases. However, you MUST legally comply with PAS tests if you are:
- On DUI probation
- Under 21
- Legally arrested
Blood tests are generally not used in these pre-arrest tests.
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A Note About BAC Urine Tests in California
You should be aware that you may legally be required to complete a blood, breath, or urine test after a DUI arrest. Blood and breath tests are used most frequently. However, there are situations that disallow the use of these tests.
In these cases, you may be asked to perform a urine DUI test. As with breath and blood tests, you are legally required to complete these assessments after you are arrested. Refusal can lead to the suspension of your license and other penalties.
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Handle the Results of your DUI Blood Test
BAC tests can be used to determine if your BAC is at or above the legal limit in California. Generally, drivers must keep their BAC:
- Below 0.01% if they are under 21
- Below 0.04% if they are commercial drivers
- Below 0.08% if they are over 21
You have legal options even if your DUI blood test reported that you were driving while over the legal limit. BAC testing is not always accurate. The results of your test could be disputed by a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles. The team at the Simmrin Law Group could work to show that:
- The arresting officer did not perform the BAC test properly
- The test was not handled properly by laboratory technicians
- The testing equipment was not repaired or maintained properly
Learn more about your legal options for handling a DUI blood test in California by contacting us today.
Get Help if You Refuse a DUI Blood Test
You can face a license suspension if you refuse a DUI blood test in California. Get help after any DUI arrest – including an arrest involving a refusal enhancement – by reaching out to the Simmrin Law Group. Complete our online contact form or call to speak to a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles.
We’re ready to review your options with a FREE case evaluation.