Can a minor refuse a breathalyzer test in California? While they, of course, can, refusing a blood alcohol content (BAC) test can have serious legal repercussions, including the immediate suspension of a minor’s driver’s license.
Breathalyzer tests are often used during a stop for driving under the influence (DUI). The results of a breathalyzer test can lead to DUI charges. Find out more about the charges related to breathalyzer tests and how to fight them with the Simmrin Law Group. We’ll answer your questions today. Just call (310) 997-4688.
Breathalyzers and Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) Tests
Police officers often stop drivers who they believe are driving under the influence. During a traffic stop, officers can request that a driver complete a PAS test. Generally, breathalyzers are used to conduct these tests.
Legally, drivers under 21 must complete a PAS test. A PAS test measures the driver’s BAC. Drivers under 21 cannot legally drive if their BAC is at or above 0.01%. This means that drinking any alcohol before driving can lead to DUI charges.
You should know that drivers over the age of 21 can legally refuse a PAS test. However, this does not apply to a driver on DUI probation. These drivers also must comply with a PAS test request. All drivers have to complete BAC testing if they are legally arrested.
Results of Refusing a Breathalyzer Test in California
So, what happens if a minor refuses a breathalyzer test in California? The answer is, there are serious legal consequences. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can suspend the minor’s driver’s license for one year.
Note that the DMV sometimes chooses to suspend a driver’s license for two years after a PAS test refusal. The DMV can use this longer period of suspension if the driver:
- Previously refused another PAS test
- Has a past conviction for a DUI or another type of violation
A DUI lawyer in Los Angeles can step in to help if you are accused of refusing a breathalyzer test. Find out more by contacting the Simmrin Law Group and speaking to a member of our team. You can reach us by calling (310) 997-4688.
Penalties for Minors Convicted of a DUI in California
As we mentioned, drivers are often required to take a breathalyzer test during a DUI arrest. Minors can face DUI charges in the state of California. In fact, the state has two DUI charges specifically for drivers under the age of 21. These charges include Vehicle Code (VC) 23136 and 23140.
However, drivers under 21 years old can also face charges for an “adult” DUI. Generally, the court looks at a driver’s BAC level when deciding what charge to use. Drivers with a BAC at or above 0.08% can face charges for an adult DUI.
VC 23136 and 23140 charges come with relatively minor penalties. Drivers convicted of an under 21 DUI can face fines and the suspension of their driver’s license. Drivers with a higher BAC level can face jail time as well as monetary penalties and a driver’s license suspension.
Disputing the Results of a Breathalyzer Test in California
The results of a breathalyzer test are often treated as important evidence in DUI cases. However, these results are not always strictly accurate. Breathalyzers can return improper results if the tests are not conducted properly.
A DUI lawyer in Los Angeles can work to show that a law enforcement officer improperly performed a breathalyzer test. We can also argue that you were stopped without due cause. This means you can get legal help if you took a breathalyzer test and “failed.”
Our team focuses on helping drivers accused of an under 21 DUI. We’ll work to get your charges reduced or even dismissed. We can even step in to help if you were asked to complete additional BAC testing after an accident. For example, we can request a sample of a blood test to do independent testing. Allow us to take charge of your defense starting right now.
Find Out if a Minor Can Refuse a Breathalyzer Test
A minor technically has the ability to refuse a breathalyzer test in California. However, refusing this test can have serious legal consequences, including allowing the DMV to suspend your driver’s license. You can still end up facing DUI charges after a breathalyzer test refusal. Find out how to handle an under 21 DUI with the Simmrin Law Group. Just call our team at (310) 997-4688. You can also complete our online contact form.
Find out how we can help with a free consultation.