Florida DUI Breath Test Lawyers
Our Tampa DUI Lawyers Are Ready to Dispute Breath Test Evidence at (813) 321-7323
An individual who is arrested for DUI in Tampa, Florida will be asked to submit to a chemical test, most often a breath test, to determine their blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Also referred to as a breathalyzer test, the breath test is administered using a device called the Intoxilyzer 8000. This machine measures the concentration of alcohol deep within the driver's lungs and uses a formula to then determine the amount of alcohol in the driver's blood.
There is no way to determine with complete accuracy the driver's BAC by taking a breath sample. The possibility of skewed test results is increased even further in the presence of an improperly administered test. If you took a breath test after an arrest and had a result of 0.08 percent or greater, this does not mean that you should or will be convicted of DUI.
By getting the involvement of our Tampa DUI breath test lawyers, can you take the necessary steps to fight for your future. We have over 20 years of aggregate experience and have handled 7,000+ criminal cases. Contact us today at (813) 321-7323 to put that to work for you.
With our experience and our commitment to our clients, we are confident in our ability to help you challenge your charges. To build a defense against BAC results, a lawyer must examine multiple aspects of your case. Factors that may contribute to the credit of that evidence include whether the test was administered correctly, whether it was administered by a trained professional, and whether the device was calibrated in accordance to state regulations and standards. The size or health of the individual might weigh on the results if skews the test results.
Other things that affect breath tests include:
- The test was administered by an individual who was not trained in breath test administration
- The device was not properly maintained or regularly calibrated by state standards
- A physical condition unrelated to alcohol consumption led to a falsely high result
- The defendant vomited, belched, ate, drank, or smoked 20 minutes or less before the test
The officer must determine that the subject of the DUI test fits the required criteria and is a good candidate for accurate results. The officer is also required to observe the subject for 20 minutes before conducting a breath test. It is their responsibility to make sure the device is properly calibrated and that the test is conducted in a manner to encourage accurate results.
If the officer failed in this duty, a DUI attorney could argue to have the results removed as evidence in the trial. Our legal team has years of experience with DUI defense and knows the science and function of the breathalyzer test devices. We can provide you with a capable DUI attorney in Tampa to argue for your defense and help you achieve the best possible outcome in your case.
Other issues with Florida breath tests might include the following:
- The officer did not have probable cause to conduct the test
- The driver was not arrested for DUI prior to the test
- The driver was informed of Florida’s Implied Consent Law but did not understand what it meant before the test
- Having multiple tests contradict each other with differing readings
- The driver requests legal counsel before taking the breath test or requesting a different type of test
Refusal of a Breath Test in Florida
In Florida, if you get a driver’s license, you are also consenting to taking an approved chemical or physical test when you’re pulled over. This will be administered when an officer has reason to believe that you have been driving under the influence of alcohol.
According to Florida law, chemical or physical tests must be done following a lawful arrest. Should you refuse to submit to this test, you will be facing automatic penalties, including driver's license suspension. Per Florida Statutes §316.1939, if you have been lawfully arrested for DUI and were informed that refusal to submit to such a test would result in license suspension, you might face misdemeanor problems.
For a first-time refusal, the license suspension will last for one calendar year. If you refuse the test and have done so before, you will be facing an 18-month suspension. The refusal to submit to a breath test is also admissible into any future criminal proceedings.
Florida’s 20-Minute Blood Test Law
Florida law requires officers to observe DUI suspects for 20 minutes before administering a breath test. This rule is meant to ensure that the person being tested does not do anything that could affect the results of their test. If this rule is not followed, than Florida DUI breath tests are not allowed to be used as evidence during a trial.
Blowing Too Much Air into a Breathalyzer Can Inflate Readings
If the person who administers a breath test tells a person to blow too hard or too much into the machine, the results might be artificially skewed as a result. Florida law prohibits the person giving the test to encourage someone to blow as hard as possible into the machine. If a person was told to blow too much, it might be possible to have their breath test results discarded as evidence.
Florida Roadside Breath Tests & Implied Consent
A common question associated with driving under the influence is whether a driver must submit to a roadside breath test. The answer may vary depending on the specific circumstances. If a driver is pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, they may face administrative license suspension for refusing a roadside breath test. As every case is different, it is important to get detailed information that applies to your unique situation. An attorney can provide you with the insight you need to make informed decisions about your case.
Portable Breath Tests (Preliminary Alcohol Screening) in Florida
Roadside breath tests are referring to a specific type of breath test administered before a driver is arrested for DUI. Often referred to as a preliminary alcohol screening (PAS) test, this type of test is typically administered using a portable device in the field, as opposed to a formal test conducted at the police station after a driver is taken into custody on suspicion of DUI.
Refusing a portable test is not without risk. If a person refuses a test in Florida, they face license suspension unless their lawyer can show that their DUI arrest was not warranted. Additionally, refusing a breath test may create suspicion that the person accused of DUI was trying to hide their level of intoxication.
If you have been charged with a DUI, there is hope! Rely on the Tampa DUI breath test attorneys at Thomas & Paulk, P.A. to defend you. We’ve handled thousands of cases, so call (813) 321-7323 for a free consultation of your case!
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