Utah DUI Breathalyzer Refusal

Under Utah's Implied Consent law, you automatically give your consent to provide a blood or breathalyzer test if the police believe that you are driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs--just by getting your driver's license. The penalties for a breathalyzer refusal in Utah have the potential to greatly impact not only your ability to drive but your life in general, so obtaining the representation of a qualified DUI defense attorney is in your best interest.

Penalties for Refusing the Breathalyzer

In Utah, your driver's license can be suspended for violating the Implied Consent law and the length of the suspension is based on the number of similar offenses on your record. If this is your first time refusing the breathalyzer test, your could lose your license for 18 months. The penalty is increased for a second and third breathalyzer refusal to a three-year license suspension.

You do have the opportunity to appeal the license suspension, but you have to send a hearing request to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 10 days. In addition to submitting this paperwork on time, you must establish a defense in order to get the DMV to overturn this automatic suspension. A defense attorney who has experience handling administrative license suspension hearings will be able to help you with this difficult process.

Why is fighting your suspension so important? Unlike many other states, Utah rarely grants work permits to individuals who lose their license because of a DUI or breathalyzer refusal. This means that you will truly be unable to drive throughout your suspension or risk increased consequences. If you live in an area without adequate public transportation or cannot get a ride from a friend, this could put your job in peril. 

Fighting a Breathalyzer Refusal

If you are interested in fighting your breathalyzer refusal, a DUI defense attorney can help. Officers are supposed to read the Implied Consent warning, which explains the consequences you could face for refusing to take a chemical test. If you weren't aware of the law and the potential penalty, this could help your defense.