What happens if I refuse a breathalyzer in Oregon

Driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUII) is a serious offense in Oregon. Any person found to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher will be placed under arrest and charged with a DUII. Unfortunately, there are other consequences related to a DUI regardless of your BAC level. If you are pulled over for a suspected DUI in the state of Oregon, the officer will administer a breathalyzer test if the arresting officer believes you are intoxicated. Refusal of the breath test can and will result in some harsh penalties.

Consequences of refusing a breathalyzer test

Police officers in Oregon use the Intoxilyzer 8000 breath test machine to administer a breath test. This test is administered after the officer has arrested you for drunk driving. Taking this breathalyzer test and blowing over the legal limit does not mean an automatic DUI conviction on your record. However, under the Oregon Implied Consent law if you refuse to take a breath test will result in a one-year suspension of your driver’s license and a $650 fine. Furthermore, it’s also likely that the arresting officer will obtain an on-site warrant to have a paramedic come and draw your blood. This blood test will be sent to the state crime lab and tested for its BAC level. 

What Should I do if I have been charged with refusing a breathalyzer test in Oregon? 

If you have been charged for refusing to submit to a breathalyzer, urine or blood test it’s extremely important that you contact my downtown Portland DUI law firm, Andy Green Attorney at Law P.C. to protect your driver’s license and keep you on the road.  You will need an experienced attorney to challenge the validity of the Implied Consent Breath test refusal. From the time of your arrest, you have 10 days to request a hearing to contest the refusal suspension or you will automatically lose your driver’s license for at least one year and up to 3 years. Therefore, it is critical that we do not miss this 10-day deadline to demand the hearing. 

What is Oregon’s Implied Consent Law

Did you know that when you became a legal driver in the state of Oregon you automatically “consented” to be tested for substances via a breath test, blood, or urine test at the request of law enforcement when under arrest for a DUI? 

What most people don’t realize is that driving privileges can be affected not only by the court system but also by the Division of Motor Vehicles. Once the DMV becomes aware that you’ve refused a breathalyzer test (or blood or urine test for that matter), your license will be suspended by the DMV. This happens even if you are found “not guilty” in the court system. 

Can I file for a Hardship Permit (Work Permit) After Refusing A Breathalyzer? 

If you refuse to take a breathalyzer and the DMV suspends your license for one year then you must wait a minimum of 90 days before you are eligible to apply for a hardship permit. Note: A hardship permit allows you to drive a non-commercial motor vehicle only. A Hardship permit grants permission of a valid Oregon licensed driver who has their license revoked or suspended to limited driving freedoms: See ORS 807.240 for qualifications. 

  • To drive to and from work within a 12 hour period.
  • To drive in selected Oregon counties while working on-the-job
  • To seek employment in select Oregon counties
  • To get to and from an alcohol or drug treatment program
  • The person or a member of the driver’s immediate family requires medical treatment on a regular basis and that the person must operate a motor vehicle in order that the treatment may be obtained

Contact Portland DUI Attorney Andy Green today to Protect Your License and Your Innocence. 

In Oregon, a refusal of a breathalyzer test by itself is considered a traffic violation, not a criminal offense. Unfortunately, the refusal of the breathalyzer test triggers a one-year implied consent driver’s license suspension and a DUI charge as well. If you have been charged with a DUI and related criminal charges such as refusing a breathalyzer test contact me today to save your license and your innocence.

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