Should You Consent to a Breathalyzer Test When Pulled Over in Tampa FL (or Pinellas County)
TO BLOW OR NOT TO BLOW; that is the question. The split decision of consenting to a breathalyzer test when you are pulled over for a potential DUI is a very difficult decision to make and also a very difficult question to answer. This is a decision that each person has to address individually. What’s more, it’s a decision that people are often confronted with while having inadequate knowledge of the State’s Criminal and Administrative Laws to make an informed analysis.
According to Florida DMV records there were 33,625 DUI convictions in Florida in 2011. In Hillsborough county alone there was 3,256 convictions in 2011. In Pinellas County there were 3,336 DUI citations issued in 2015. In short, the odds of getting a DUI in FL are actually much higher than most people are willing to admit.
The trouble you have is that nobody understands the ramifications of either decision until it’s too late. For example on a first time DUI, if you were to render a breath sample and that breath sample were to be over the legal limit you will be charged with DUI and your license will be forfeit. You could drive, for business purposes only, under traffic citation for 10 days, but at the expiration of those 10 days, your license will be revoked for 30 days of administrative hard suspension. If you enroll in your DUI class during that period, then after the 30 days is over you can apply for a hardship license. Which you can drive on for the rest of the pendency of your case. Now if you were to refuse to blow on a first time DUI. Your license is automatically administratively suspended for an entire year. You could drive on the on the citation for 10 days and after that 10 days a 90 day period of hard administration suspension kicks in. You can during that time, enroll in the DUI school and apply for hardship license after the 90 days and then drive during the pendency of your case, however you will have an administrative year long suspension of your license. This is immutable, even if your case gets dropped or reduced to reckless driving. Because there is the criminal aspect of DUI which is courts and then there’s the administrative aspect which is independent of the courts, but is all about the DMV and their regulations. So you have to ask yourself, how badly do I need drive my car to go to work to take my kids to school? And remember, before you drink and drive, there are no hardship licenses for second timers.
So, if you have been arrested for a DUI please call The Law Offices of Christopher DeBari right away and begin the process of protecting your legal rights.
Know more about our Tampa DUI Attorneys.