License Suspensions for Refusing the Breathalyzer Test

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From his Lunenburg office, attorney Matthew Gilman represents clients all over the state of Massachusetts. Fill out the form on this page or call the office today to connect with him and set up a free consultation. Matthew will discuss your case in the office or even in your own home and determine the best way forward for your unique situation.

Yes. If you are arrested and the police suspect you are under the influence of alcohol, police will request you submit to a breathalyzer test. Massachusetts is an “implied consent” state, which means if you refuse to submit to the test your license will automatically be suspended.

If you decide to take the breathalyzer test and the results are below .08, you can still be charged with OUI. However, your license will not be suspended. If you blow a BAC of .08 or above your license will be suspended for 30 days.

If you decide to refuse or the police determine your actions constitute a refusal your license will be suspended automatically. The length of the suspension will be determined based on the number of prior OUI convictions or substance abuse programs a court has assigned you to.

  • No prior convictions or program assignments = 180 days License Suspension.
  • One prior conviction or program assignment = 3 year License Suspension.
  • Two prior convictions or program assignments = 5 year License Suspension.
  • Three or more prior convictions or program assignments = Lifetime License Suspension.


Appealing a License Suspension for a Breathalyzer Test Refusal is permitted in Massachusetts. However, you have a very limited time period after you arrest to file any appeal. Hearings must be started within 15 days of your arrestIf you do not appeal within 15 days of your arrest, the Registry will not conduct an appeal hearing. Appeals are only held at the Registry of Motor Vehicles Driver Control Unit located at 136 Blackstone Street, Boston. This hearing is not to determine if you are guilty or innocent of OUI. The only issues the hearing officer will consider are:

  • Did the police officer have reasonable grounds to suspect you were under the influence?
  • Were you under arrest at the time of the refusal?
  • Did you actually refuse the Breathalyzer?

Gilman Law attorney’s can represent you at all stages of your DUI/OUI case. Representation can include challenging any suspension for refusing the breathalyzer at the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Contact Us Today for a Case Evaluation.