California is an "implied consent" state, which means that all
licensed drivers are expected to cooperate with breath, blood, or urine
tests during a DUI stop. While our implied consent law (Vehicle Code Section
23612) is in place to help make all our roads safer, it continues to face
resistance and refusals from drivers and, as mentioned on our
breath & blood tests page, result in significant penalty.
The penalty for refusing a chemical test is the
suspension of your driver's license and jail time. Much like DUI penalties themselves, chemical test refusal
penalties in California increase with repeat offenses—and at a much
steeper rate than other states.
Penalties for chemical test refusal are:
- First refusal: one year license suspension and two days of jail
- Second refusal: two year license suspension and 96 hours of jail
- Third refusal: three year license suspension and 10 days of jail
A $125 fine is also issued in these cases, but does not increase with repeat
offenses. It should be noted that these penalties are in addition to any
that are incurred due to a DUI conviction.
Implied Consent and Your Rights
Because submitting to a chemical test is not an arrest, there are few rights
the driver has once they are asked to comply. For instance, drivers may
not ask to speak to a lawyer before submitting to the test. However, the
driver does have the right to information concerning penalties for refusing
to submit: law enforcement is required by law to let the driver know that,
if they refuse the chemical test, they do face suspensions, jail, and
fines. If you are not informed of these penalties at the time of the chemical
test, you can be excused from them.
If you or a loved one is facing penalties due to a chemical test refusal,
then proper legal representation is needed to navigate your case to the
best possible outcome. Attorney De Yoe has been assisting the Greater
San Diego community with their legal issues for
more than 30 years and is ready to protect your rights as you face your own charges.
Call Mark R. De Yoe, APLC to speak with a trusted San Diego DUI lawyer today!