Hopkins Heltzel Law Firm
Call For A Consultation814-299-5496

Does DUI blood-alcohol test refusal fee violate USSC ruling?

Most Pennsylvania residents are already aware that they face a driver's license suspension if they refuse to take a breath test during a traffic stop if a police officer suspects impairment. What they may not yet be aware of is that beginning on Jan. 11 the state intends to institute a pretty hefty fee for those convicted of DUI who refused to submit to a blood-alcohol test. One issue that may arise because of this new law is that it could violate a ruling issued by the U.S. Supreme Court. 

In 2016, the country's highest court ruled that law enforcement officials must have a search warrant or consent in order to conduct a blood-alcohol test. Under the ruling, officials are not allowed to impose, or threaten to impose, criminal penalties on someone who refused to give consent. Pennsylvania's new law may violate this ruling since it may end up imposing a criminal penalty for refusing the test.

The law provides that anyone convicted of DUI who refuses to consent to a blood-alcohol test must pay a restoration fee. The first time someone refused to consent, it will cost $500, the second time will cost $1,000, and each subsequent refusal would cost $2,000. Prior to this new law, the fee was $70 to restore a driver's license.

It could be some time before this new law gets tested in the courts. In the meantime, individuals stopped on suspicion of DUI will continue to have to decide for themselves whether the risk of taking, or not taking, the test would be in their best interest. One thing may be for sure, the necessity of quickly enlisting the aid of legal counsel after such an arrest only seems to be increasing.

Source: triblive.com, "Trib editorial: Pa.'s DUI fee poses potential conflict with Supreme Court ruling", Jan. 6, 2018

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Tell Us About Your Case!

Our dedicated team of experienced attorneys bring years of successful litigation and courtroom experience to offer a fresh outlook for all your legal matters. Regardless of the complexity of your situation, our team can provide you with a thorough evaluation of your case and current legal standing. To request additional information regarding our services, please reach out to our offices at your earliest convenience by calling 814-299-5496.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Contact

100 Meadow Lane
Suite 5
DuBois, PA 15801

Phone: 814-299-5496
Fax: 814-375-5035
DuBois Law Office Map

Review Us