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Should I Refuse Chemical Testing During a DUI Stop? In the state of Illinois, over 26,000 DUI arrests were made throughout 2018 alone. A conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can come with serious legal ramifications, including a Class A misdemeanor charge on your criminal record, significant fines, and temporary loss of driving privileges. Once a driver submits to and fails chemical testing (a driver with a blood alcohol content over 0.08 percent will be deemed intoxicated), it can be incredibly difficult to fight against the charges. So is it wise to refuse chemical testing altogether? Below we will discuss the consequences of refusing chemical testing during the DUI arrest process

The Benefits of Refusing to Test 

The first thing to understand about refusing chemical testing is that it is not a criminal offense. While all licensed drivers in the state of Illinois agree to submit to chemical testing when they are awarded their license, you will not face a criminal charge for refusal. Refusal to submit to chemical testing, which is most commonly administered through a breath test, is an administrative offense that will result in a one-year driver’s license suspension for a first-time offender. While you will temporarily lose your driving privileges and likely be arrested for driving under the influence, you will significantly decrease the likelihood of a conviction. 

After refusing chemical testing, the officer will likely ask you to take part in field sobriety tests. It is important to note that you also have the right to refuse field sobriety testing. Without the evidence of a field sobriety or chemical test, a conviction will only be possible with strong testimony from the officer, surveillance footage, or witness testimony. A failed chemical test, on the other hand, will almost always result in a conviction barring police oversight or negligence. If you choose to refuse to submit to chemical testing, it is important for you to act in a responsible and polite manner. Your actions during the arrest process will become the most significant form of evidence for the prosecution. 

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Oak Brook DUI defense lawyerOne of the most common questions asked about driving under the influence (DUI) is this: If you are arrested for DUI, should you submit to a breathalyzer test at the police station or refuse to blow?

As you will see, this is a difficult question to answer. Some experts argue that the less evidence you give the prosecution, the better; in other words, refuse the test if there is any chance you are over the legal limit. Others argue that it makes sense to take the test because, if you are below the legal limit, you could get the DUI charge dismissed altogether.

The purpose of this article is simply to help you understand the consequences of taking versus refusing a post-arrest breathalyzer test. This test is also referred to as an evidentiary test because the device and procedures are considered accurate enough to be used as evidence in court.

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