When you get pulled over for alleged drunk driving in New York, there are several procedures the police officer will follow. He or she may ask you some questions about whether you have been drinking. The officer may ask you to step out of the car and perform a field sobriety test. Then, the officer may ask you to submit to a chemical test, whether by breath, saliva, blood or urine.
When found in this situation, many people are unsure of what to do. Can you refuse the breath test? Do you have to give up a blood sample?
New York operates under an implied consent system, which means that simply being stopped by a police officer means you are consenting to a chemical test. Unfortunately, in New York, drivers who are stopped for drunk driving and refuse to submit to a chemical test can face serious penalties.
If you are over the age of 21 and have never been stopped for drunk driving before and you refuse a chemical test, you could have to pay a $500 penalty. Additionally, your license may be revoked for an entire year. If you have been charged with drunk driving or refused a chemical test sometime in the last five years, you face a $750 fine and a minimum of a year and a half without a license.
Being stopped for DUI and then told you must submit to a chemical test can easily feel like a violation of your privacy. Fortunately, there are ways challenge chemical test refusal penalties.
Source: DMV.org, "DUI & DWI in New York," Oct. 29, 2013