If a law enforcement officer observes that you are hugging the yellow line, driving through red lights, erratically speeding up and slowing down or breaking other traffic rules, they will have probable cause to stop you for a DUI investigation.
This investigation may involve directing you to take a Breathalyzer test to ascertain your blood alcohol content (BAC) level. At this point, you have the right to yield to the test or refuse. However, before deciding to refuse the Breathalyzer test, it is important to understand the consequences.
Pennsylvania has an implied consent law
Like the other states, Pennsylvania follows implied consent laws. This means that by operating a vehicle on the state’s roads, you agree to consent to a blood alcohol content (BAC) test if the police stop you for a DUI investigation.
The penalties for refusing a Breathalyzer test in Pennsylvania
Per Pennsylvania laws, you will face severe penalties if you refuse the Breathalyzer test – perhaps even more severe penalties than a first DUI conviction. These penalties are as follows:
- For the first refusal, your driver’s license will be suspended for 12 months. Additionally, you will pay a $500 fine before your license can be reinstated.
- For the second refusal, your driver’s license will be suspended for 18 months. You will also pay a $1,000 fine when reinstating your driver’s license
- For the third refusal, your driver’s license will be suspended for another 18 months. Plus, you will pay a $2,000 fine before your license can be reinstated.
Driving under influence puts your life as well as other road users’ well-being at risk. Unfortunately, mistakes happen. If you are charged with drunk driving or refusing to take the Breathalyzer test, you need to figure out your defense options.