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What are the penalties for violating the implied consent law?

Arizona law enforcement officers are legally able to stop a vehicle if they have reason to believe that the driver is drunk. When they initiate a traffic stop for that reason, they might ask the driver to take a field sobriety test. In some cases, the officer might ask the driver to submit to a breath test or chemical test. At that point, the concept of implied consent comes into the picture.

What is implied consent?

Implied consent is a concept that you agree to when you get your driver's license. Essentially, this concept means that you agree that you will take a breath test or chemical test when a law enforcement officer asks you to take the test during a traffic stop in which drunk driving is a factor.

What are the penalties if I fail to comply with the request for a breath or chemical test?

If you refuse to take the breath or chemical test, you will lose your driving privileges. Upon the refusal, your driver's license will be suspended for 12 months if this is your first refusal. Second refusal within an 84-month period comes with a 24-month license suspension.

If your license is suspended for failing to comply with a request for a chemical or breath test, you will have to complete an alcohol/drug screening before you can get your license back. You also have to do the same if you plan to apply for a restricted driving permit. These penalties are on top of possible criminal penalties that you might face. Those criminal charges require a firm defense.

Source: DMV.org, "DUI & DWI in Arizona," accessed July 21, 2016

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