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The consequences of breath test refusal in Maryland

When an individual has been pulled over by police for drunk driving, it is important that they understand what happens next and their rights. In Maryland, a breath test refusal, or failing a breath test, may result in the loss of the individual's driver's license. The police officer will confiscate the individual's driver's license and issue a temporary paper license. If the individual's driver's license has been confiscated by police, they may be authorized to drive using the temporary license.

The police officer will provide the driver with an Officer's Certification and Order of Suspension, which will provide information about the alleged incident, the pending driver's license suspension and whether or not the driver submitted to a test to determine their blood alcohol content level. The driver will also receive an Advise of Rights Form that provides information concerning administrative sanctions related to the driver's driving privileges following the stop. It also advises the driver of additional penalties that may be imposed and provides other information as well.

From the date of the Order of Suspension, the driver may request an Administrative Hearing within 30 days to fight the driver's license suspension. To ensure the driver's driving privileges are not suspended prior to the hearing, they must request a hearing within 10 days of the Order of Suspension and the request must be made in writing. The individual's driver's license will be suspended on the 46th day following the Order of Suspension if the driver does not request a hearing within 10 days of the Order or Suspension or in some other circumstances.

There are a variety of important details, timelines and deadlines to be familiar with when facing a driver's license suspension. Because a variety of factors impact how long the driver's license will be suspended, it is important for the accused individual to be familiar with the process and their legal options in the face of the process.

Source: Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration, "Alcohol Test Failure or Refusal," Accessed April 30, 2018

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Law Offices of
James N. Papirmeister, Esq.

Law Offices of James N. Papirmeister, Esq.
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Silver Spring, MD 20910

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As Published in Washingtonian Magazine | Washington's Best Legal Minds | 2013