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What happens when you refuse a breath test in florida?

As much as drunk driving checkpoints and other safety measures are intended to protect a community, they seem to evoke an equal amount of fear into Florida's drivers. More so, those who have only had a minimum amount of alcohol worry that a breathalyzer test could fall just slightly over the legal drinking limit, throwing them into a vicious cycle of paperwork, court fees and revoked licenses. Although these tests can take dangerous drivers off the road, they can also place many limitations on the state's residents.

Why measure your breath to get your blood alcohol concentration?

The implications of you refusing to submit to a breath test in Fort Myers have been detailed on this blog in the past. While refusing a chemical breath test is a violation of the state's implied consent law, refusing a preliminary alcohol screening (like a Breathlyzer test) is not. Yet despite the setting or the circumstances, you might wonder why your breath is even measured when your level of impairment is determined by the alcohol concentration in your blood. How does your breath offer a measurement of the content of your blood? 

The reality of refusing a breathalyzer test in florida

Sometimes, just one short drive home can become the start of a long, drawn out process of legal fees and court dates. Like most states, Florida strictly enforces its breathalyzer laws, but not every driver who rolls down their window to a test is guilty of driving while under the influence. Just a small drink or two can result in months, and even years, of repercussions. With these potentially crucial penalties, what are drivers' rights in the case they are presented with a breathalyzer test in the state?

The basics of florida's breathalyzer laws

For many Floridians, driving home after having a drink could come with larger consequences than expected. While a drink or two may seem benign, driving afterwards and refusing a breathalyzer test is no light matter. However, every incident is deserving of fair consideration, and drivers who feel those rights have been violated may choose to take legal steps forward.

Can you refuse to take a breath test?

Florida residents who are pulled over and asked to take a breath test may wonder whether or not it's actually mandatory. Will you get into trouble if you simply refuse to take the test? While some people may think it's a good idea to refuse, it can actually be more trouble than a DUI charge on its own.

What are some different types of sobriety tests?

Drivers in Florida are subject to an implied consent law. This means that as soon as you drive, you are implying that you've given your consent to police to test your blood alcohol content levels if they put you under arrest for reasonable suspicion of driving while under the influence.

What does Florida’s implied consent law mean?

Florida drivers may not be aware of it, but every time you get on the road, you have automatically given police consent to take a urine, blood or breath test if they arrest you for a DUI. This is called Florida’s implied consent law, and it impacts all drivers.

Can authorities test my blood alcohol level if I am unconscious?

If you are accused of driving under the influence, your life may change in various ways. Aside from time behind bars and costly fines, having a DUI on your record could haunt you for years to come. The drunk driving laws in Fort Myers, and other parts of Florida, may be different in comparison to other states. As a result, it is crucial to find answers to any questions you have, such as whether or not law enforcement officials can measure your BAC level while you are unconscious.

What does implied consent mean?

When it comes to drunk driving, the laws vary from one state to another. If you live in Fort Myers, it is very important to recognize where Florida stands on certain matters and understand key terms, such as implied consent. If you refuse to submit to a breath test, you could face a wide range of consequences if you are apprehended, including the suspension of your license and even prison time, depending on the circumstances.

Breath test refusal and license reinstatement

According to the Florida Legislature, when drivers refuse to submit a breath test after being pulled over in the state, their driver's license is suspended. In Fort Myers, and elsewhere in the state, driving privileges are suspended for one year for those who refuse a breath test for the first time and as many as 18 months for those who have already had their license suspended because they refused a breath test in the past, which can make life very challenging.

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