What is the Implied Consent Law?
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. 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 license suspension.
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!