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Breath Test Refusal

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West Windsor Breath Test Refusal Lawyers

Breath Test Refusal Lawyers Protect the Rights Of Individuals Charged With DWI In Mercer County, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey

At Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC, we understand that at the moment you are pulled over under suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI), panic sets in, and thoughts race through your head regarding what to do. Should you submit to a field sobriety test? What if you’ve had a drink or two? What happens if you refuse a breath test?

Let us help. While law enforcement officers cannot require you to submit to a breath test, in New Jersey, there are consequences for refusal. And if you refused a breath test, we’ve got you covered. Our criminal defense attorneys share more than 18 years of combined experience. We protect your rights, defend the charges against you, and advocate on your behalf. Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC offers a free consultation; schedule your case evaluation with a member of our team today.

Understanding Implied Consent Under New Jersey Law

Implied consent simply means that as a condition of driving on the roads in New Jersey — whether you are licensed here or in another state — you have already consented to provide samples of your breath for testing if you are stopped and arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI). Your refusal to provide samples of your breath for testing is an offense separate from a DWI and by itself can lead to license suspension, monetary fines, installation of an ignition interlock device, and surcharges. It is imperative to speak with an experienced breath test refusal lawyer about your case.

What Is Considered To Be A Refusal By Police In A New Jersey DWI Case?

In New Jersey, you can only be charged with a refusal to submit to testing if you refuse to give samples of your breath after you have been arrested. The breath test that you may be asked to give on the side of the road is not the breath test. The roadside breath test is a portable breath test or PBT, and it is not admissible as evidence of intoxication in New Jersey. 

If you do give a breath sample into a PBT on the side of the road and you are then arrested and taken back to the police station, you must still give samples of your breath at the police headquarters. If you do not submit to a breath test at the police station, then you will be charged with Refusal to Submit.

It is also illegal in New Jersey to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of marijuana. Marijuana DUI can be evidenced by observation.  Because impairment from marijuana is more challenging for law enforcement to ascertain, there are often more pathways to develop a strong legal defense of a marijuana DUI charge.

Knowledgeable Breath Test Refusal Lawyers Explain The Consequences Of A Refusal In New Jersey

In New Jersey, there are consequences for breath test refusal, based on whether it is your first, second, or third offense. Specifically, the penalties for breath test refusal are as follows:

First Offense DWI

  • Monetary fine of $300 – $500 and suspension of the drivers’ license suspension until an ignition interlock device is installed in the vehicle
  • Mandatory participation in an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center for a minimum of six hours a day for two consecutive days 
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle for a period of 9 to 15 months after the drivers’ license is restored 
  • Payment of an automobile insurance surcharge of $1,000 a year for a period of three years

Second Offense DWI

  • Monetary fine of $500 – $1,000 
  • Suspension of the drivers’ license for one to two years following installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle
  • Detainment in an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center for 48 consecutive hours
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle for a period of two to four years after the drivers’ license is restored 
  • Payment of an automobile insurance surcharge of $1,000 a year for a period of three years

Third Offense DWI

  • Monetary fine of  $1,000 fine 
  • Suspension of the drivers’ license for eight years following installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle
  • Installation of an ignition interlock device in the vehicle for a period of two to four years after the drivers’ license is restored 
  • Payment of an automobile insurance surcharge of $1,500 a year for a period of three years

For first, second, and third offenses

  • Payment of a $100 surcharge to be deposited in the Drunk Driving Enforcement Fund
  • Referral to an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center

Basic Elements Of A Viable Breath Test Refusal Case In New Jersey

In order for a person to be convicted of Refusal, the state must prove four elements, which include the following:

  • the arresting officer had probable cause to believe that the defendant had been driving or was in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs 
  • the defendant was arrested for driving while intoxicated 
  • the officer requested that the defendant submit to a chemical breath test and informed the defendant of the consequences of refusing to do so 
  • the defendant thereafter refused to submit to the test

Schedule A Free Consultation With An Experienced New Jersey Breath Test Refusal Lawyer

If you or a loved one is facing the penalties for breath test refusal in New Jersey, let us help. The leading criminal defense attorneys at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC have extensive experience handling breath test refusal cases and in-depth knowledge of the complexities of New Jersey’s DUI laws.

Schedule a free consultation with an experienced New Jersey breath test refusal lawyer at Aydelotte & Scardella Law LLC.  Our criminal defense team is available to answer your questions, explain your rights under the law, and advise you of your legal options. Schedule your free consultation with our office day.

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