Do you have to submit to a breath test if asked to by police?

You may have had a drink or two at happy hour after work, or perhaps you shared a bottle of wine at dinner at a restaurant, and then drove home. However, while on your drive you may dread to see red-and-blue lights flashing in your rearview mirror. Before you know it, an officer is asking you to perform a breath test to determine your blood-alcohol concentration.

Is a breath test always necessary?

For a variety of reasons, you may be tempted to refuse to submit to a breath test, and in fact you have the right to do so. You may believe you are sober, and therefore testing is unnecessary, or you may be afraid of what testing will mean for your future. However, it is important to understand what North Carolina law says about breath test refusals.

What happens if you refuse a breath test?

If you are charged with driving while intoxicated and refuse to take a breath test, your driver’s license will be immediately for 30 days. However, after 10 days you may be eligible for a limited driving privilege. A limited driving privilege may be granted by a judge, but only if you did not cause anyone harm, there was not a child in the vehicle and you obtain a substance abuse assessment. It is important to note that if you are convicted of DWI and it is your first offense, your driver’s license will be revoked for one year.

Learn more about DWI in North Carolina

While there are consequences for refusing a breath test, you may still want to do so. Ultimately this post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Those who have further questions about DWI in North Carolina are encouraged to explore our firm’s website to learn more.

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