If you’re pulled over and accused of driving while impaired, the thought of taking a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test could be frightening, insulting or both. If you’re sober, you may resist this testing effort because you have done nothing wrong and are concerned about false positives. If you aren’t sober, you may resist because you know that the results will be incriminating.
As challenging as this situation is, you’re actually far better off choosing to submit to a BAC test than you are in choosing to refuse one. If you refuse a test, you’ll incur negative consequences without question. But if you take a test and the results are unfavorable, you can potentially fight them successfully.
Why taking the test is a better idea
You may think that refusing a test will help you maintain your innocence, but it will likely do the opposite. The assumption will be that you would have submitted to testing if you were innocent because you had nothing to hide.
Additionally, there are penalties that you’ll incur simply for refusing BAC testing after you’ve been arrested on suspicion of drunk driving. These penalties will be imposed regardless of whether you win your DUI case and will be imposed even if the drunk driving charges you’re facing are dropped. (Note that BAC testing is different from field sobriety testing and from PAS testing before an arrest has been made.)
At the end of the day
While it may be tempting – for a variety of different reasons – to refuse a blood or breath test designed to calculate the concentration of alcohol in your blood, the consequences of this decision simply aren’t worth it.
It is a far better idea to submit to the test, however unjust it may be, and to then seek legal guidance as soon as you can if the test reflects consequential results. You’ll place yourself in a stronger position to avoid a negative case outcome – regardless of the BAC results – if you take a test than if you guarantee a negative outcome by refusing them.