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Will I Go to Jail if I Refuse to Take a Breathalyzer Test in NY?

As you know, being stopped by a police officer is almost never in your interest. Unfortunately, if a police officer suspects that you are driving while under the influence of alcohol, there is a very good chance that he or she will ask you to submit to chemical testing, most likely via a breathalyzer test. If you are, in fact, under the influence of alcohol, you may contemplate simply refusing to blow into the breathalyzer. However, this seldom works to your benefit, as you will generally be presumed guilty. Upon refusal, you will most likely receive an immediate 15-day license suspension. Next, you will most likely have to attend a court hearing within 15 days. The court hearing will determine whether you will face criminal charges and keep/lose your driver’s license for a longer period of time. If you are someone who recently refused a breathalyzer test and are now required to attend a court hearing, you must continue reading and contact our Rockland County criminal defense attorney to learn more about the process ahead and how our firm can guide you through it. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What happens at the refusal hearing?

At your refusal hearing, you and your attorney will have to disprove what the police officer is trying to prove. Simply put, the arresting officer must prove that you provided reasonable suspicion for the stop, that you were warned about the ramifications of refusing to submit to chemical testing, and that you did so anyway, thereby warranting a lawful arrest. If the officer is successful in proving as much, you will most likely lose your license for up to one year. Our knowledgeable Rockland County criminal defense attorney, can do everything in his power to prevent this from happening. If this is your first offense DWI, you will most likely face civil fines of $500 and a one-year license suspension. If this is your second or third DWI or refusal to submit to chemical testing charge, you will face at least an 18-month license suspension. If you have any further questions, or you need an experienced attorney who can work to fight your charges, please do not hesitate to give us a call today. Our firm is ready to help you in any way we can.


Kevin T. Conway has over 30 years of experience as a Spring Valley criminal attorney handling DUI, DWI, traffic violations, violent crimes, sex crimes, illegal gun possession, shoplifting, and juvenile crimes. Attorney Conway is also experienced in commercial law matters, zoning law, and estate planning. If you need a Rockland County criminal lawyer, contact our Spring Valley office for a free consultation.

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