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Refusal to Submit to Testing in a BUI

What happens if you are lawfully arrested for BUI in Florida, but refuse to submit to a lawfully requested sample of your breath, blood, or urine? The good news is that the refusal itself does not impact your driving record.

The bad news is that you will be assessed a $500 civil penalty, you are not allowed to operate a vessel until the fine is paid, and a second refusal in the future becomes a crime.

The only way to contest the civil penalty is to file a demand for a formal hearing within 30 days of the arrest. The judge presiding over the criminal case also presides over the administrative hearing involving the civil penalty.

In the Tampa Bay area, many of these BUI arrests are made by officers with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, but any local agency with a waterway in their jurisdiction might make an arrest for boating under the influence.

Attorney for BUI Refusal Cases in Tampa, FL

Contact attorney Leslie Sammis about your BUI case in Florida. Ms. Sammis has handled many DUI and BUI cases throughout the greater Tampa Bay area.

For instance, on March 30, 2017, she took a BUI case to trial in Pasco County, FL, and the jury returned a “not guilty” verdict pending before the Honorable Debra Roberts in the West Pasco County Judicial Center in New Port Richey, FL. The arresting officer was Officer Damon Pulaski, with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC).

Disclaimer: The Florida Bar does not approve of or review case results. Your result might be different than the one listed here. Not all results are listed here. Each case must be evaluated on its own merits.

At Sammis Law Firm, our main office is located in downtown Tampa in Hillsborough County. We have a second office in New Port Richey in Pasco County, FL.

Our attorneys fight BUI cases in all of the surrounding counties including Herando County, Pasco County, Pinellas County, Manatee County, Sarasota County, Hillsborough County, and Polk County, FL.

Call 813-250-0500 to discuss your case.


What Happens after a BUI Arrest in Florida?

After the arrest, the arresting officer will cause certain documents to be filed in the circuit court which triggers a case number and arraignment date being assigned.

Those documents include the criminal report affidavit, the affidavit of refusal to submit to testing, and the Uniform BUI Citation.


Florida BUI Implied Consent Warning

In Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission has developed its own form for a BUI investigation that includes the implied consent warning to be read in a BUI case.

The form provides:

Defendant’s Name: ________
Case No.:_______

I am [____officer’s name___] of the [Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission]. You are under arrest for operating a vessel while under the influence of alcoholic beverages or controlled substances.

  • ___ I am not requesting that you submit to a lawful test of your BREATH for the purpose of determining its alcohol content.
  • ___ I am not requesting that you submit to a lawful test of your URINE for the purpose of detecting the presence of chemical or controlled substances.
  • ___ I am not requesting that you submit to a lawful test of your BLOOD for the purpose of determining its alcohol content and the presence of chemical or controlled substances.

If you fail to submit to the test I have requested of you, it will result in a civil penalty of $500.

Additionally, if you refuse to submit to the test I have requested of you and you have previously been fined for refusal to submit to a lawful test of your breath, urine, or blood, you will be committing a misdemeanor.

Refusal to submit to the test I have requested of you is admissible into evidence in any criminal proceeding.

Will you submit to the test?

Date: ____________________
Time: ____________________
Defendant’s Signature: _________
Officer’s Name (Printed): _______
Officer’s Signature: ___________

FWCDLE 108D (10/18)


FWC Refusal to Submit to Testing Affidavit

In a BUI cases involving a refusal to submit to a breath test, the arresting officer will use the FWCDLE 108F form. The form is then filed in the criminal BUI case pending before the judge. The form provides:

In the County Court of the 13th Judicial Circuit

in and for Hillsborough County, FL

 

State of Florida
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Division of Law Enforcement

Refusal to Submit to Breath, Urine, or Blood Testing

State of Florida,

Plaintiff,

vs.

__________,
Defendant.

Affidavit of Refusal Regarding Uniform Boating Citation No. _____

I, ________, a law enforcement officer, who having been duly sworn, certify and state the following:

  1. That on [day of week], [date (month and year)], at [time] probable cause existed to arrest the above named Defendant for a violation of section 327.35, Florida Statutes, as set forth in the attached narrative which is incorporated by reference as if set forth fully herein.
  2. That on that date and time:
    • ___The Defendant was under lawful arrest for an offense committed while the Defendant was operating a vessel while under the influence of alcoholic beverages, chemical substances, or controlled substances, and the Defendant was requested to submit to a breath test, urine test, or both a breath and a urine test; or
    • ___The Defendant has appeared for treatment at a hospital, clinic, or other medical facility, the administration of a breath or urine test was impractical or impossible, and the Defendant was required to submit to a blood test.
  3.  The Defendant was advised of both the penalties for failure to submit to the blood, breath, or urine test and the procedure for requesting a hearing.
  4. The Defendant refused to submit to the blood, breath, or urine test(s).

This article was last updated on Tuesday, December 15, 2020.

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