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What Happens if I Refuse a Breath Test in Massachusetts?

refuse breath test Massachusetts

If you refuse a breath test in Massachusetts, it can help in your OUI defense, but it also has its own consequences. Your driver’s license will be suspended anywhere from 180 days up to life, depending on your age and history.

See below for a chart showing the length of suspension by age and number of prior convictions for operating under the influence:

Over 21

No Prior OUI Convictions (or CWOFs): 180 days

One Prior OUI Conviction: Three years

Two Prior OUI Convictions: Five years

Three or More Prior OUI Convictions: Lifetime

Under 21

No Prior OUI Convictions (or CWOFs): Three years

One Prior OUI Conviction: Three years

Two Prior OUI Convictions: Five years

Three or More Prior OUI Convictions: Lifetime

 

Furthermore, if you have a prior OUI involving bodily injury or if you have a prior OUI with vehicular homicide, the suspension will be much longer.

However, if you refuse a breath test in Massachusetts, your OUI case may be easier to win a trial. It’s a strategic choice that depends on how much you’ve been drinking.

If you fail a breathalyzer test, your license will also be suspended immediately.

 

Can I Reduce this Suspension?

You have the right to appeal a license suspension for a chemical test refusal.  This appeal must be submitted within 15 days to the Boston RMV on a walk-in basis.  You can appeal further to the district court.

If you are found not guilty, you can also apply immediately for your license to be reinstated.

 

If you refuse a breath test in Massachusetts, your license will be immediately suspended.  However, you will deprive the Commonwealth of evidence if your OUI case goes to trial.

If you are charged with OUI, you need an OUI attorney on your side immediately.  Contact me today, and let’s get started on your defense.

My office is located in Boston, Massachusetts, but I handle criminal cases, including OUI, in all Massachusetts courts. Contact me at 617-356-8217.

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