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The Pros and Cons of taking the Preliminary Alcohol Screening Test During a Los Angeles DUI Arrest

  • September 4, 2017

    If you are evaluating the preliminary alcohol test during a potential DUI arrest, you must be under the influence of alcohol or drugs. When you got your California driver’s license, you signed your consent to take a breath or blood test to determine the percent of alcohol in your blood upon the request of a police officer who suspects you are driving under the influence of alcohol.

    Cons Against Taking the Breathalyzer

    The California police can’t force you to take an alcohol or drug test, because it is strictly speaking, a search. The police can’t take your blood or test your urine without a warrant.

    You already did it. If you refused your Preliminary Alcohol Screening Test before you read this information, you need a staunch criminal defense lawyer. If you were drinking and did not want a DUI on your records, you should’ve designated a sober driver to take you home.

    As you know, refusing to take the test means you can’t get back in your car and drive. You can’t just drive away and forget the whole thing. Refusing to take the preliminary alcohol test results in a citation on or suspension of your driver’s license.

    Probable Cause

    California’s implied consent law explains: if an officer believes you are intoxicated while driving a motor vehicle, you may choose between a breath or blood test. If breath and blood tests are not available or you take anticoagulants, the officer can require you to take a urine test. If you consent to the chemical test of your breath, an indicator turns blue if your blood alcohol content (BAC) is greater than .08%. The officer can additionally require you to take an additional urine or blood test to confirm your preliminary BAC.

    First Arrest

    Your arresting officer must explain the consequences of refusing your breath test. The prosecution will say refusal to take the test is proof that you knew you were intoxicated. The officer will explain if you are convicted of driving under the influence, you’ll be fined, lose your driver’s license, and face jail time. You will be put on probation for three to five years.

    Criminal Law

    You should not attempt to face tough criminal charges by yourself. You need reliable legal representation in what may seem to be the worse time of your life. You need a lawyer to preserve your rights, to represent you in criminal and civil court, and in agency hearings to reinstate your driver’s license.

    Penalty for Refusing Test

    California Code §§ 13353, 14905 imposes a $125 fine if you refuse to take the blood, breath, or urine test and a one-year suspension of your license. A second refusal results in a two year suspension of your driver’s license. The penalty is a three-year suspension if you were convicted of DUI within the last ten years.

    First Offense

    In California, your first DUI conviction with no property damage or injuries results in a minimum of a $1,000 fine plus other DUI fees totally $1,800. Your driver’s license will be suspended for four months. Upon reinstatement, your license will be restricted for 90 days. You’ll only be permitted to drive to and from work and to and from an alcohol treatment program. You must also complete a $500 90-day substance abuse treatment program.

    Subsequent Offenses

    The maximum penalties for a DUI offense are a $5,000 fine and $13,000 in fees. You could be required to spend 12 to 16 months in prison. Your vehicle can be impounded and forfeited. You can lose your driver’s license for three or four years, and you must complete a 30-month alcohol treatment program.

    DUI Criminal Defense

    Contact us for dedicated criminal defense representation. It’s a chance to avoid jail time and stiff financial penalties. Our DUI criminal defense lawyer is a former prosecutor. You can trust our law firm to be with you through the entire legal process. We know the judges, and we are respected by the prosecutors. We have a 99 percent success rate. You’re in safe hands in our California law firm: 97% of our clients don’t go to jail.

    H and M Law

    Call today for a free initial consultation in our conveniently located Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, or Orange County, California, law office. We offer flexible payment plans.

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