Law Offices of Michael T. Nolan, Jr.

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What happens if you refuse a breath test?

If you or someone you know has been arrested on drunk driving charges in New Jersey, you understand how difficult this situation is. If you have not been arrested for a DUI charge but want to protect yourself in case you are ever stopped, this is wise. Not having the right information up front can get you into more trouble down the road. This is particularly important when it comes to refusing a breath test.

The bottom line is that refusing any such test as requested by a law enforcement officer is plain and simply illegal in New Jersey. If you do refuse the test, you can expect to be subject to penalties that are essentially the same as those for an actual DUI or DWI conviction. A breath test can be requested after being stopped when a field sobriety test is also administered. It can also be offered at a police station.

The fines for a refusal can be up to $500 with additional fees that can exceed that amount. Another $3,000 in surcharges over a three-year period will also need to be paid. For a first offense, you will lose the right to drive for up to 12 months. For a second offense, you will lose your license for up to 24 months. The license suspension period extends up to 10 years for a third offense. Use of an ignition interlock device will be ordered and you will be required to cover all costs associated with that. 

You can get more information about penalties, implied consent and DUI testing on our website. 


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Law Offices of Michael T. Nolan, Jr.
514 Brick Boulevard, Suite 6
Brick, NJ 08723

Toll Free: 888-415-7141
Phone: 732-965-3342
Fax: 732-477-0492
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