Florida DUI Implied Consent Explained

Florida’s implied consent law states that by driving within the State of Florida, you have consented to a chemical test of your breath, blood or urine if a police officer has sufficient reason to suspect you of drunk-driving. If you are arrested for drunk-driving and you fail to take a chemical test of your breath, blood or urine, you will be faced with the loss of your driver’s license.

Challenging the Loss of Your Driver’s License

Driving is not a right. Rather, it is a privilege. For this reason, the Florida Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) can confiscate your driver’s license at the time of your DUI arrest if you refuse to take a chemical test of your breath, blood or urine. If this happens, your DUI citation will temporarily serve as your driver’s license pending the outcome of your challenge to the loss of your driver’s license.

In order to challenge the loss of your driver’s license, you must file a request for a formal review hearing within ten days from the date of your arrest. If you fail to file a timely request, you hearing will be waived. At the formal review hearing, the police officer who arrested you and administered a test of your breath, blood or urine (or offered to administer a test if you refused testing) will testify against you. You will be given the opportunity to cross-examine the police officer and any other witnesses who testify against you. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to present your own evidence and offer any legal support that is in your favor.

Penalties for Violating Florida’s Implied Consent Law

If you are arrested for DUI and refuse to take a chemical test of your breath, blood or urine, you will be charged with violating Florida’s implied consent law. If this is your first failure to comply with Florida’s implied consent law, you will not be charged with an additional crime. However, if you have a history of violations of Florida’s implied consent law, you could face an additional criminal charge. For a repeat offense, the penalty is a hard suspension for 180 days. During a hard suspension, you will not be able to drive for any reason.