What Happens If You Refuse to Take a Breath Test in South Carolina?

It’s your legal right to refuse to take a breath test. You still have legal options, and your case is winnable. Remember, anything short of a DUI conviction is a win.

South Carolina has an implied consent law, which means that all drivers in the state automatically consent to alcohol and drug testing as part of a DUI arrest. Thus, if you refused the DataMaster DMT or Breathalyzer test, there will be consequences:

Bad Consequences

  • Your driver’s license will automatically be suspended for six months.
  • You will have no proof of your blood alcohol content (BAC) level in court.
  • The judge or jury might not look favorably on your breath test refusal.
  • The prosecuting attorney might hit you with heavier charges.

Good Consequences

  • If you also refused the blood test, there will be no proof of your BAC level.
  • You can request an implied consent hearing, at which your lawyer might be able to get you a temporary driver’s license.
  • Evidence for the DUI case against you is limited to the opinions of the arresting police officer, results of field sobriety tests (if you submitted to them) and video from the officer’s squad car.
  • You will not be charged separately for refusing to take a breath test.

Take action quickly. You must meet tight court deadlines (30 days after your license suspension) to restore your driving privileges. We can help you in that process and aggressively advocate for reinstatement of your driver’s license.

Protect Your Driving Privileges — Protect Your Future

Please call Drennan Law Firm in Charleston at 843-352-4149, or email us to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our attorneys. We can fight for you through the entire legal process, and help you protect your future and your freedom.