Challenging license suspensions for chemical test refusal

On Behalf of | Jun 19, 2018 | Driver's License Suspension Or Revocation

Driving plays a major role in most people’s lives here in Massachusetts. So, a license suspension can have far-reaching impacts for a person. There are many things that can lead to a Massachusetts driver facing such a suspension. One is being accused of having refused a chemical test, such as a breath test, in connection to an OUI arrest.

Here in Massachusetts, when drivers are arrested for drunk driving, they are required to submit to chemical tests requested by law enforcement. This is due to the state’s implied consent laws. While refusing such a test does not carry criminal penalties, it does trigger the administrative penalty of a license suspension.

How long is this suspension? For individuals 21 and up with a clean record, it is 180 days. It is much longer for people of this age group with past OUIs on their record. In that case, the suspension length would be between three years and lifelong, depending on how many OUIs a person has on their record. As a note, there are certain circumstances in which a person could request early reinstatement.

Can a chemical test refusal license suspension be challenged? A person could contest such a suspension through a hearing.

There are limits though to what can be challenged in such a hearing. The only things that can be challenged are whether there was a refusal, whether an arrest was actually made and whether there were valid grounds for the arrest.

Also, there is a time limit for contesting such a suspension through a hearing. The deadline for appearing is 15 days following an alleged test refusal.

So, when a person is facing a license suspension in connection to an alleged chemical test refusal, it can be important for them to quickly seek information on their situation and options. Prompt and proper guidance can be crucial. Individuals can seek out such guidance from skilled OUI defense attorneys.