New Jersey DWI Attorney John Menzel

Can A Person Refuse To Take A Drug Test? What Are The Consequences?


A person is within their rights in New Jersey to refuse to submit to the drug influence evaluation [“DIE”]. They are also within their rights to refuse to submit either urine or blood samples, unless the officer obtains a warrant or other court order from a judge. The only samples a person is required to submit without a warrant or court order are breath samples. There are significant consequences for refusing to submit breath samples. The penalties for breath test refusal are as bad and, in some cases, worse, than the penalties if convicted of DUI.

How Reliable Are Blood Tests Taken In Drug DUI Cases? How Might This Help My Defense?

If the analysis is a qualitative analysis, that means they are merely testing for the presence of the drug. Those types of tests are subject to attack, based on many issues that can arise during the discovery process. Quantitative analysis, assuming it is supported by documentation, is also subject to attack both by way of the actual testing process itself and whether the quantity detected is below, at, or above therapeutic limits. The history of the individual with the use of that drug must be considered, as well. If this drug is not prescribed or illicit, the inference that a person is under the influence of that drug will be stronger than if the drug is a prescription medication with which the person has a history that can be corroborated by their treating physician.

Should I Ever Admit That I Have Taken Or I Am On A Prescription Medication?

When you are the target of a police investigation, you should never answer any questions, even about legally prescribed medications. When an officer asks you a question, invoke your Fifth Amendment right to remain silent by telling the officer directly and clearly that you do not want to answer any questions. People often think when they are questioned by an officer, it is a choice between lying and telling the truth. But the third and most appropriate choice is to simply not answer their questions. You have this absolute right under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Unless there is a medical emergency requiring you to be taken to a hospital, do not tell officers anything at all.

Are Drug DUI Cases Typically Harder Or Easier To Defend Than A DUI Stemming From Alcohol?

The difference depends on the specific prosecutor that you are dealing with. There are many prosecutors who do not believe in drug influence evaluations [“DIE’s”] because the technique is not generally accepted in the scientific community. In those cases, the defense of that kind of a DUI case will be very easy. On the other hand, there are those prosecutors who believe in the technique and will prosecute the case. In those cases, the preparation and execution of the defense is not much different than that for an alcohol DUI, except that the defense will usually want to have the breath alcohol result in evidence rather than having it excluded.

Do You Tend To See Drug Related DUI Charges That Also Come With Charges Such As Possession?

The combination is very common, particularly in the case of illicit drugs. We often see possession of a controlled dangerous substance [“CDS”] and drug paraphernalia possession paired with DUI. The possessory offenses are classified as “disorderly persons” offenses in New Jersey, equivalent to misdemeanors in other states. Another common charge is the possession of CDS while operating a motor vehicle. Although this a traffic offense, it brings a serious consequence–revocation of driving privileges for two years.

Will I Have To Have An Interlock Ignition Device Installed In My Vehicle For A DUI Drug Conviction?

A breath alcohol ignition interlock device [“BAIID”] is not mandatory for a first offense, but for second or subsequent offenders, a BAIID must be installed on any vehicle the person owns, leases, or customarily operates second or subsequent offense, an alcohol ignition interlock must be installed for a period of no less than one year and no more than three years, even though there may have been no alcohol involved. Keep in mind that in New Jersey, the BAIID requirement is viewed as an additional punishment. The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission [“MVC”] views the BAIID as the bridge between full revocation and full restoration. If a person fails to get the interlock, according to the way the law is currently interpreted, that person would never be eligible to get driver’s license restored until the BAIID is installed.

For more information on Drug Test Refusal In A Drug DUI Case, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (732) 899-1899 today.

John Menzel, J.D.

Learn your options - call me for your free, 20 min phone consultation (732) 899-1899

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