Failure to provide offences

The police have the right to request a sample should they have suspicion that you are driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs.

This sample can be in the way of breath, blood or urine. Failing to provide a sample can result in being charged with failing to provide a specimen and can result in a penalty.

How our solicitors will help you

Our specialist motoring offence solicitors will investigate the circumstances surrounding the arrest to build up a strong case to get the best outcome possible. You must have been warned by the police that you could be prosecuted if you fail to provide a sample, if they have failed to inform you of this, the case can be challenged.

You are entitled to legal advice at the police station, but the process for getting a breath, blood, or urine sample won’t wait for you to consult with a solicitor. If you’re charged with such an offence, it’s vital to seek advice immediately since CCTV evidence of the procedure is only kept for 28 days.

It’s extremely important for the police to follow all the correct procedures. If they do not, it could seriously harm the prosecution’s case. This aspect of law is very complicated, but our experts will thoroughly review the procedures that were followed. If needed, we can even bring in an independent forensic scientist to help strengthen your case.

Should you suffer from any of the above conditions or have potential defences available to you it is vitally important you have a skilled and expert solicitor to help you successfully prove this to court on your behalf.

Failing to provide FAQs

What are the consequences for failing to provide a specimen?

Should you refuse to provide the police with a specimen and you plead or are found guilty you will face a 12-month driving ban, and/or a fine, and in the most extreme cases potentially a 6 month prison sentence.

If you are convicted for failing to provide a specimen, the Court might see it as deliberate non-cooperation, treating it as seriously as drink or drug driving. The penalties can be severe, so it’s crucial to get legal advice from a specialist solicitor right away.

What are the potential defences for failing to provide a specimen?
  • Potentially a respiratory condition – such as Asthma, COPD or any other condition that could affect the ability to provide a specimen.
  • Phobia of needles.

  • Prostate conditions or UTI’s.
  • Mental health conditions – any mental health disorder either pre-existing or brought on by the circumstances of the situation should always be raised.
  • Police errors – if the testing equipment fails or does not follow proper procedures, this could potentially also be a defence to this offence. The Police must follow the correct procedures and ensure their equipment is working properly. To thoroughly investigate this specialist advice from a solicitor skilled in these types of arguments should be sought at the first opportunity.
What is an unreasonable excuse for not providing a specimen?
  • Personal or work commitments – you cannot avoid providing a specimen due to prior commitments.
  • Belief that you are not over the limit or under the influence – any personal belief is not an adequate excuse for failing to provide.
  • Disagreement over the type of test – you do not get the option as to which test you would like to conduct. If the police ask you to conduct any test and you refuse, you risk being charged with failing to provide a specimen.
Can I consult a solicitor before providing a specimen?
While you have the right to legal advice, the procedure for obtaining a specimen typically won’t wait for you to consult with a solicitor. It’s crucial to understand this limitation and seek legal assistance promptly.
How long is CCTV evidence of the procedure retained?

CCTV evidence of the procedure at the police station is usually retained for a limited period, commonly 28 days. It’s essential to act quickly if you intend to dispute the charges based on procedural grounds or evidence.

Is failing to provide a specimen treated similarly to drink or drug driving offences?

Yes, failing to provide a specimen is often regarded as a serious offence, and the legal consequences can be comparable to those for drink or drug driving offences. It’s essential to take any charges related to failing to provide a specimen seriously and seek legal advice promptly.

Should you suffer from any of the medical conditions mentioned or have potential defences available to you it is vitally important you have a skilled solicitor to help you successfully prove this to court on your behalf.

Get in touch

Speak to one of our expert motoring law solicitors now – call 01245 343971 or email drivingenq@gepp.co.uk.

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