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Tag Archives: breathalyzer defense

Illinois breathalyzer defense lawyerWhen one is pulled over for suspicion of driving drunk, they may be asked to submit to a breathalyzer test. While, ultimately, you do have the right to refuse this test, doing so could increase your odds of experiencing an arrest and the subsequent penalties. Submit and blow a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) that registers over the limit and you will be arrested anyway.

What is BAC and how does it affect your ability to drive? The following information explores the answer to these questions. You shall also learn how to fight back against the potential consequences of a DUI, including the suspension of your Illinois’ driver’s license.

What is BAC?

BAC is a measurement of the amount of alcohol in your bloodstream (or your “level of intoxication”) and it can only be accurately determined through a blood test. (Note that not all blood tests are accurate.) Obviously, law enforcement would not be able to use this type of testing out in the field, which is why they have breathalyzers. Able to detect the amount of alcohol in the mucous membranes of your mouth and throat, it can establish enough probable cause for a DUI arrest. Should that occur, you may be faced with serious criminal consequences.

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DUI, breathalyzer pitfalls, DuPage County DUI defense attorneyYou are charged with your first DUI. You knew you only had one drink and were safe to operate your vehicle. The swerve the officer reported occurred when you were avoiding a deer. The shifts in your driving speed were because it was late on a Friday after a long week of work and you were not even paying attention to your foot. Shocked to see an officer’s lights in your rearview mirror, you assumed you might have been speeding. When the officer asked you to submit to a breathalyzer, although confused, you agreed. You failed. Your life is dramatically altered now because of that test, which, in your opinion, was wrong.

The Outlook

If you have never been the recipient of a DUI, a wealth of new thoughts may be running through your mind, not the least of which is what this can do to your future. In Illinois, there are strict regulations pertaining to the punishment of DUI offenders. Consequences for the first offense include:

  • Up to one year of incarceration;
  • Fines and penalties of up to $2,500;
  • Minimum license suspension of up to one year; and
  • Required interlock Ignition Device (IID) installation.

Although much of this appears intimidating, remember that no matter the odds stacked against you, there are often avenues for a defense that are not immediately visible. Also, with the newly instated DUI laws, you may be eligible for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP) within the first 30 days of the statutory suspension period—further proof that the situation may not be as dire as it presently seems.

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DuPage County DUI defense lawyer, refuse the breathalyzerIt is popularly suggested that drivers suspected of driving under the influence submit to field sobriety testing in order to avoid a DUI charge. While there may be several reasons why one should avoid these tests in many other states, the state of Illinois has enacted steps to “persuade” drivers to do so. In most cases, refusal would not be in one's favor. However, with the most commonly used form of sobriety tests, the breathalyzer, it is important to understand that the technology has many downfalls. 

Laws to Prevent Refusal 

The state of Illinois is an “implied consent” state. This ultimately means that in return for driving permissions, if you are arrested for DUI and the arresting officer had probable cause for the arrest, then you are consenting to a chemical test of your blood alcohol content (BAC). This can be in the form of blood, breath or urine.

The law goes on to explain that you also consent to a preliminary test, which in most cases use a breathalyzer test. The results of the preliminary test will be used to establish probable cause, which may result in an arrest. After the arrest is made, then you are required to submit to chemical testing. However, if you refuse to take the chemical test, then you will be subject to penalties, which the officer is required to tell you at the time of refusal. Penalties for refusal include: 

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