High Breathalyzer BAC Results
Threshold blood alcohol content for which greatest penalties and fines may apply, even on a first offense. As previously described, there are two tests which may be offered by the law enforcement offer. The first test would be offered on the street and the result of the test would not be admissible in court against you. This is the PBT or preliminary breath test. You do not have to take this test if requested, you can just say no and there is no penalty. If you say yes and blow a .08 or higher (or close to a .08 but less), the officer will probably find that this is probable cause for the DUI arrest.
Upon getting to the police station things begin to heat up because the police will now seek to get the actual breathalyzer number so that they can use this BAC number to convict you in court. They are required to read you a fairly lengthy form first so that you know your rights before providing a breath sample. They are not allowed to skip the form, they are not allowed to skim it or to ready bits and pieces of the form. They either read the whole form or they give it to you to read. Then they ask you to blow. If you say no, there will be an administrative penalty imposed by the MVA which will be 120 license suspension or 1 year of interlock on your car.
If you do blow in the machine and you provide a high BAC number, there are consequences for that as well. Starting with a lower number, .08-.14, the MVA penalty is a 45 day license suspension which is modifiable at an MVA hearing. At the hearing you can request a work restricted license for those 45 days so that you can drive to and from work while otherwise suspended. The MVA tends to be fairly easy going with this modification if this is a first DUI offense.
If you blow a higher number of .15 or greater, the penalty is harsher, it includes a suspension of the driver's license for 90 or alternatively you may elect to get the interlock for 1 year. Unfortunately, there is no modification of the license for work if you blow a .15 or higher because the MVA feels as if this is a more serious number and they will not extend any breaks. You can the lock on the car however, at your expense for one full year and there will be no period of suspension. In fact, you can get the lock installed voluntarily without a hearing at all which can be convenient. However, an attorney still needs to review your case because there are times when a voluntary interlock may not be the best idea. That is, there are times when your case may be defendable before the MVA so in this case, requesting a hearing and paying the $125.00 fee for the hearing may be the more intelligent choice. Also, if you need a employee owned vehicle exemption in order to drive an employer car, this will also require a hearing even if you otherwise agree to the interlock. Thus, there are many options available when int comes to the MVA penalties so be sure to contact counsel for the best advice.