Joseph J. Colarusso, Attorney at Law
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What happens if you refuse a Connecticut chemical alcohol test?

Even if you had just one alcoholic drink before getting behind the wheel, you may feel hesitant to take a chemical test if a Connecticut law enforcement official pulls you over and asks you to do so. You may know that a Connecticut drunk driving conviction brings with it serious repercussions and penalties, but you may know less about what can happen to you if you refuse to take a breath or other chemical test entirely.

According to the State of Connecticut’s Department of Motor Vehicles, a law enforcement officer who stops you and believes you consumed alcohol prior to driving may ask you to submit to a chemical test using your hair, blood or urine. In most cases, breath tests are the preferred method of assessing your degree of intoxication, but, ultimately, it is at the discretion of the arresting officer to choose which type of test he or she wants to give you.

If you refuse to take the test the officer recommends, the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend your driver’s license, and this usually happens within 30 days of the date of your arrest. At this point, you can request a hearing, provided you do so within the appropriate timeframe, or you can plan on losing your license for a period of 45 days.

Once you get your driver’s license back after the suspension period, you will have to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle, which requires you to blow an acceptable breath sample before it allows your vehicle to start. The length of time you will need to keep the ignition interlock device on your vehicle will vary based on if you are facing your first, second or third drunk driving offense.

This copy is informative in nature and is not meant to serve as legal advice.

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