Failure to provide a specimen
If you fail to provide a specimen, either at the roadside or at a police station, you can be charged with failure to provide a specimen.
Sentences for failure to provide a specimen are now broadly similar to those for drink driving. The minimum disqualification for drink driving is 12 months with magistrates having discretion to give a ban of 18-24 months unless successful mitigation can be shown.
A possible defence against this charge is if you can show a ‘reasonable excuse’ for not providing a specimen. This could be a medical reason such as breathing difficulties which hinder you from completing a breathalyser test. It may also be a phobia of needles which prevents you from giving a blood sample at the police station.
Another issue which could lead to a possible defence is when the police officer has not given the required warning that failure to provide a specimen could result in criminal prosecution. Failure to follow this procedure may result in the refusal to provide a specimen being lawful.
You are not entitled to stall the giving of a specimen to police to speak to your lawyer and then advance a defence on that basis.
If you have been charged with failing to provide a specimen contact us to obtain advice from our experienced solicitors.