Failure to Provide a Specimen

Failure to Provide a Specimen

Failure/Refusal to Provide a Breath, Urine or Blood Specimen

The police can lawfully require you to provide a breath, urine or blood specimen for analysis if they are investigating whether you have committed a drink or drug driving offence.

They will usually ask for a breath test (taken at the roadside) unless there are medical or evidentiary reasons they feel they need a sample of urine or blood instead (taken at a police station).

Failure to provide a specimen is a criminal offence unless you have a “reasonable excuse”. It can be difficult to know what is classed as a reasonable excuse, as well as the circumstances under which you are required to give a sample. At Richard Silver Solicitors, our road traffic lawyers provide expert legal assistance to those accused of failing to provide a specimen. Contact us today for immediate advice and representation.

Call us on 0161 834 9494 to find out how we can help.

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What are the penalties for failure to provide a specimen for analysis?

Failure to provide a specimen has two different maximum penalties if convicted. One applies if you were driving or attempting to drive at the time the police initially requested a sample, and one which applies if you were not driving or attempting to drive but you were in charge of a vehicle.

The penalties are wide-ranging for each and that is why it is essential that you have expert legal representation so that all factors that could lead to an acquittal or reduction in sentence are fully considered by the court.

Failure to provide a specimen when driving or attempting to drive

If convicted of failure to provide a specimen when driving or attempting to drive, the maximum penalty is six months’ imprisonment, a £5,000 fine, between 3 and 11 penalty points and disqualification of at least 12 months.

Failure to provide a specimen when in charge of a vehicle

If convicted of failure to provide a specimen while in charge of a vehicle, you could face up to three months’ imprisonment, a fine up to £2,500, ten penalty points and you may be disqualified from driving for at least 12 months if the court decides this is necessary.

What counts as a reasonable excuse for failure or refusal to provide a specimen?

If you have a reasonable excuse for failing or refusing to provide a specimen, your charge for this offence may not lead to conviction in court. Some examples of reasonable excuses include:

  • A medical condition that prevents you from giving a sample or is a significant cause of your failure or refusal to give a sample, such as asthma, panic attacks or anxiety. You must provide medical evidence to support this defence.
  • You were physically unable to provide the specimen, for example because you have a genuine phobia of needles. Again, this will need to be supported by medical evidence.
  • The police did not follow the proper procedure when requesting the sample, for example by not warning you that failure to provide a specimen can lead to prosecution.

Why instruct Richard Silver Solicitors?

If you are convicted of failure to provide a specimen, this can have serious consequences. You may be imprisoned, forced to pay a large fine or prevented from driving, all of which can have a negative impact on your livelihood and future. At Richard Silver Solicitors, our empathetic staff understand how stressful this can be, which is why we will work hard to achieve the best result for you.

In-depth knowledge of the process

With over 25 years’ experience in this area, Richard Silver’s road traffic solicitors will help you build a solid defence. Our lawyers can advise you on whether the police followed proper procedures when requesting a specimen from you, and help you to work out whether you had a reasonable excuse for failing to provide one. We can also help you obtain medical evidence and any other expert reports you may need to support your case.

Contact our Failure to Provide a Specimen Solicitors Manchester, UK

Richard Silver is based in Manchester and represents clients throughout the UK. We understand that there are many reasons you may not provide a specimen at the roadside or police station, and we can help you explain your side of the story. To find out more about what we can do for you, contact our team on 0161 834 9494 or use our online contact form and we will get back to you shortly.