States Which Consider Test Refusal a Criminal Offense

"Eight States consider a test refusal as a criminal offense. The manner in which refusal is criminalized varies among the 8 States. Refusal is considered a misdemeanor in Alaska, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Ohio. It is considered an infraction in Indiana. In California, refusal becomes a criminal offense if the driver is convicted of DWI after refusal. In Vermont, refusal is criminalized for drivers with a prior DWI. In New Jersey, traffic law violations, including violations of the implied consent law, are considered “quasi-criminal.” All 8 States impose a fine and/or a jail sentence for the crime of refusing a breath test."


Zwicker, T.J.; Hedlund, J. and Northrup, V.S., "Breath Test Refusals in DWI Enforcement: An Interim Report," Preusser Research Group, Inc. (Trumbull, CT: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, August 2005), p. 3.