If a police officer stops you for suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol in Pennsylvania, they may ask you to take a test to determine if you are drunk. The rules regarding DUI tests in Pennsylvania can be confusing.
Many people believe such tests are mandatory, but the laws vary widely from one test to another. In many cases, you have the right to refuse to take such tests without fear of being arrested or facing any other consequences associated with DUI charges.
Convictions for drunk driving can have serious consequences, including loss of license, higher insurance premiums, fines, and even jail time. If you or someone you know was arrested, contact an experienced Scranton criminal defense attorney who understands the laws concerning drunk driving tests in Pennsylvania. Mazzoni Valvano Szewczyk & Karam may be able to help you get the results you need.
There are several different types of DUI tests in the Keystone State. Click on the following links to read more about some of the most common tests administered by police officers and your rights concerning agreeing to take these tests:
Contact our law firm as soon as possible. We may be able to help you and work to rectify the situation as soon as possible. Just because you “failed” a drunk driving test does not mean that you are guilty.
Many drunk driving tests, especially field sobriety tests, are notoriously unreliable. The same applies to breathalyzer tests and even blood tests in certain circumstances. We can thoroughly investigate your test results, including how the police administer tests. We can explore all the legal options available to you.
In Pennsylvania, there have been recent changes to the law, where a tiered approach to DUI enforcement now focuses on treatment for first-time offenders. In some instances, you might be able to enroll in Pennsylvania’s ARD program for first-time offenders and have your criminal record wiped clean.
Our legal professionals help clients explore options so we can find the best approach to getting the results they need.
Some police officers in Pennsylvania ask drivers to perform a field sobriety test to determine if the driver is intoxicated. The results of such tests are frequently challenged in court. Another thing many people might not realize is that field sobriety tests are voluntary in Pennsylvania. There is no penalty for refusing to take one. The three most common field sobriety tests are:
Unlike field sobriety tests, Pennsylvania drivers must take a breathalyzer test if a police officer asks them to do so. Breathalyzers measure a person’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC). If you refuse to take a roadside breath test, the police can suspend your driver’s license for one year or more. Penalties vary depending on several factors, including your BAC and if you have previous DUI convictions.
Defense attorneys frequently call breathalyzer test results into question due to past inaccurate test results. There are many reasons why breathalyzers produce inaccurate results. The reasons include:
Another reason why breathalyzer tests are inaccurate is that the person administering the test sometimes makes a mistake. Common mistakes include improper handling of evidence and operator error. Defective equipment can also be to blame for inaccurate breathalyzer test results.
Most judges accept blood tests as an accurate reading of someone’s BAC reading. That’s why many police departments in Pennsylvania administer this test in addition to or as an alternative to a breathalyzer test.
Even so, mistakes can occur and the criminal court will reject some blood test results. Some of the reasons why BAC blood test results are considered inaccurate include:
Never assume your blood test is accurate. Always ask to have your blood sample retested and have someone review whether the test was administered according to Pennsylvania’s DUI laws. Our lawyers know how to conduct such investigations and want to help. Contact us today.
This depends on the test. You have a right to refuse to take a field sobriety test without being punished. Such tests are strictly voluntary. However, there are consequences if you refuse to take one of three chemical tests (breath, blood, or urine) to determine your BAC.
In Pennsylvania, if you refuse to take a chemical test to determine your BAC, your driver’s license will automatically be suspended for 12 months for your first DUI offense; 18 months for your second DUI offense; and 18 months for your third DUI offense.
If you refuse to take a field sobriety test or chemical test and the police charge you with a DUI, contact our law firm as soon as possible. We want to learn more about your case and explain all the legal options available to you.
According to Pennsylvania’s implied consent law, you must take a blood, breath, or urine test to determine your BAC if a police officer arrests you because the officer suspects you were driving under the influence of alcohol.
Specific rules exist to say when police can administer drunk driving tests. The law states that you must take a chemical test to determine your BAC within 2 hours of your arrest. Other requirements also exist concerning when and how police must give tests under the implied consent law.
Put your trust in a law firm that puts your best interests first. We offer a free case evaluation to all potential clients.
Free Consultation. No Obligation. Fast Reply. Find out how we can help you.