The Law Office of James Novak

DUI Urine Test Refusal Rights

Phoenix Lawyer Defending Clients Against Drunk Driving Charges

Arizona has an implied consent law. When driving on roads in Arizona, a driver agrees that if he or she is arrested for a DUI-related offense, he or she will submit to a chemical test. Chemical tests may be performed on breath, blood, urine, or another bodily substance to determine what levels of alcohol or drugs are in a driver’s body. Your DUI urine test refusal rights depend on whether you are under arrest. A seasoned Phoenix DUI attorney can help you to understand your rights in this situation.

Chemical Testing

Where an Arizona police officer thinks you may be under the influence of drugs, she may ask you to take a urine test. The urine test is the least accurate of the chemical tests in connection with alcohol. Before you’re arrested, you are entitled to refuse a Breathalyzer test. However, in most cases, you aren’t asked to submit to a Breathalyzer or other chemical test, such as a urine test, until after you’ve been placed under arrest. If you refuse, the police may arrest you and then require you to take a chemical test.

Under Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S.) section 28-1321(A), someone who operates a car in Arizona provides consent to a test or tests of urine, as well as blood, breath, or another bodily substance in order to determine alcohol concentration where the police officer has reasonable grounds to think the driver was operating the car while under the influence of intoxicating drugs or alcohol. Under A.R.S. section 28-1321(b), after an arrest, you could be asked to submit to and successfully complete whatever chemical test is prescribed and if you refuse, you are supposed to be told that your license or permit will be denied or suspended for 12 months, unless you expressly agree to submit to and successfully complete the test or tests. Failure to expressly agree to the test or complete the test is considered a refusal. You are also supposed to be informed that if the results reveal a breath or blood alcohol concentration of .10 or more, your license or permit will be denied or suspended for a minimum of 90 consecutive days.

If you face a second arrest in seven years and refuse a urine or other chemical test again, your license will be suspended for two years and you’ll need to submit to a drug and alcohol screening so that your license can be reissued.

DUI Urine Test Refusal Rights

If you refuse to take a urine test after being under arrest for drugged or drunk driving, police officers may require you to submit to this testing via a search warrant. Additionally, your driver’s license may be confiscated and you may face a license suspension. You will have 15 days to challenge the license suspension before it goes into effect, and appropriate challenges you may raise are: you weren’t put under arrest, the law enforcement officers didn’t have reasonable grounds to suspect you were driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you didn’t refuse to submit to the chemical test, or you weren’t informed of the consequences of refusing to submit to the test.

Further, tests administered by technicians who are not properly trained can lead to inaccurate results. Urine tests are the least reliable type of chemical test because the presence of alcohol can only give a rough idea of how intoxicated a driver is, but without an experienced attorney helping to make sure these tests are challenged, they may be used in court. Urine tests are subject to laboratory error, and multiple people handle these tests, so there is a high possibility that errors will be made that can be used to challenge their accuracy.

In some cases, police or technicians do not follow proper procedures in lab testing, and there may be concerns about the reliability or integrity of the results. When representing our clients, we will work towards filing a motion to suppress evidence related to a urine test if there are issues around the accuracy of the test or how it was obtained.

Consult an Experienced DUI Defense Attorney in Phoenix

If you are charged with a DUI in Phoenix, and have concerns about your DUI urine test refusal rights, seasoned criminal defense lawyer James E. Novak can potentially help. Mr. Novak represents defendants charged with DUIs throughout the Phoenix area including in Scottsdale, Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, and Maricopa County. Contact him at (480) 413-1499 or via our online form.

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