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  • Writer's pictureAccess to Justice: Trial Lawyers

Missouri DWI Laws

What Happens if I Refuse a Breathalyzer Test?

Were you pulled over by the police for driving while under the influence in Missouri?

As part of a DWI investigation, a police officer will typically request that you take a breath, blood, or urine test to determine your blood alcohol concentration or BAC. Do you have to submit to these tests?

Missouri Drunk Driving Laws

Missouri DWI law states that all motorists are prohibited from operating or being in “actual physical control” of a motor vehicle:

● With an excessive blood alcohol concentration (BAC), or

● While in an intoxicated condition - under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

“Actual physical control” of a vehicle is more than just driving. Missouri courts have said that this includes being in a position to regulate a vehicle’s movements. This would include if you are sitting in a parked vehicle with the engine running.

Excessive blood alcohol concentration is defined as:

● 0.08% or more

● 0.04% or more in a commercial vehicle

● 0.02% or more if you are a minor

Missouri also permits an enhanced penalty and “aggravated DWI” for a BAC of 0.15% or more.

Missouri DWI Penalties

A conviction for a DWI in Missouri typically includes:

● Up to 6 months imprisonment

● A maximum fine of $500

● Alcohol treatment/addiction programs

When you are arrested on suspicion of a DUI, your Missouri driver’s license will be suspended by the DMV. You have 15 days following receipt of your Notice of Suspension/Revocation of Driving Privilege to contest the suspension.

If your suspension decision is upheld, your driver’s license may be suspended for:

● 90 days, if you have no prior DWI offenses

● 1 year, if it is your second conviction

● 5 years, if your second conviction is within 5 years of your first conviction

● 10 years, if it is your 3rd or subsequent DWI or alcohol-related offense.

● 1 year, if you refuse your BAC test

Chemical Revocation

If your license has been revoked for refusing to take a breathalyzer test, this is known as a “Chemical Revocation.” During your Chemical Revocation, you may still be eligible for limited driving privilege (LDP) to go to work, school, your alcohol program, or medical treatment. You must install an Ignition Interlock Device and file a SR-22 form with the Missouri Department of Revenue.

You can also appeal the revocation of your driver’s license at the court in the county where the arrest or stop took place.

If you have been charge with a DWI or refused a breathalyzer test CALL US TODAY!

Kansas City Area: 816-6739 or Joplin Area: 417-553-4352

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