Under Hawaii’s implied consent law, any driver who has been lawfully
arrested by an officer with probable reason to believe the driver is under
the influence, has also
given consent to taking a
blood, urine or breath test. These tests must be taken soon after operating a vehicle and the results
can be used to determine the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC).
If you have been arrested, you do have the option of asking for an additional
test taken by your choice of medical professional, at your expense. Even
if there is implied consent in Hawaii, you do have the right to refuse
a blood or breath test, but at risk of a suspension to your license. If
you caused injury to yourself or another person, you could be forced to
take a test. It may also be administered to you if you are unconscious.
What If I Refuse To Take the Test?
If you refuse to take a blood or breath test in Hawaii, you can face serious
consequences. Most punishments for refusal include
These punishments include:
- For a first refusal: license suspension for 1 year
- For a second refusal within 5 years: license suspension for 2 years
- For a third refusal within 5 years: license suspension for 4 years
In addition to your license suspension, the court could require you to
be assessed by a substance-abuse counselor if you have refused a test
two or more times. This counselor could order treatment for drug or alcohol
abuse, which you could have to pay for yourself.
Is It Better To Refuse a Test?
Even though the penalties for a DUI can be very severe—including
fines, community service, and potentially jail time—ultimately,
refusing to take the test does not necessarily help you. Your refusal
can be used against you, and it can be argued that you may have refused
because you knew that your BAC was above the legal limit. Even if you
refuse the test, you can still be convicted of a DUI.
If you are in need of a Honolulu DUI attorney, The Law Office of Kevin
O'Grady, LLC can represent you.
Contact my firm today at 800-DUI-Case!