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What happens if you refuse a breath test?

On Behalf of | Oct 28, 2020 | DWI Defense |

Arkansas, like many other states, has an implied consent law. This law means that by driving a vehicle in the state, you automatically consent to take a blood alcohol test upon the request of any law enforcement officer. 

What this means to you when an officer pulls you over under suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and that officer asks you to take a breath test or some other type of test, except a blood test, that you cannot refuse to take the test. If you do refuse to submit to a blood alcohol test, the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration explains you will face consequences. 


The initial consequence of refusing to take a breath alcohol test is the suspension of your driver’s license. How long your suspension will depend on if this is the first time you have refused to take a test or how many times prior you have refused to take a test. 

For your first time, you will have an automatic suspension of your license for 180 days. If within five years, you have refused to test at least once before, then you will have a suspension for 24 months. For the third refusal in five years, the state will revoke your license for three years, and a fourth refusal equals the revocation of your driver’s license for the rest of your life. 

Additional consequences

You will have to also do additional things before you can get your driver’s license back after the suspension. This includes paying a reinstatement fee to the State Revenue Office. You also have to earn a certificate for completing a victim impact panel class. 

If the state revokes your license, you will have to go through the process of securing a driver’s license as if you are a new driver.