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Do you have to take a DUI breath test in Colorado?

Posted on October 7, 2021

When you drive in Colorado, you give your express consent to a breath or blood test if an officer suspects you are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Failure to take this test at the scene of a traffic stop can result in sanctions beyond a DUI conviction.

Learn more about Colorado DUI laws regarding express consent.

Express consent penalties

You may lose your license for up to 12 months for a first-time breath test refusal. Colorado increases the suspension period to 12 months for a second refusal and 36 months for subsequent refusal. These penalties also apply to Colorado CDL drivers.

With any Colorado license suspension, you can apply for early reinstatement, often after two months. However, you must use an ignition interlock device at your own expense for two years after regaining driving privileges.

DUI license suspension

Regardless of whether you agree to a roadside sobriety test, a DUI conviction can result in a license suspension of nine, 12 or 24 months for each respective offense. For drivers younger than 21, the respective suspension periods are three, 24 and 36 months for multiple offenses.

If you have a commercial driver’s license, you could lose your privileges for 12 months for a first-time DUI and permanently for a second DUI.

Understanding the laws regarding express consent in Colorado can help you navigate a DUI traffic stop or arrest. Whether or not you decide to provide a screening sample, you have the right to due process after an accusation of driving under the influence in Colorado.