Failing To Provide a Specimen

The offence is committed if:

a person, without reasonable excuse, fails to provide a specimen when required to do so”

This offence will arise when the police alleged that a person who has been requested to provide a specimen of breath, blood or urine, refuses to do so.

Failing to provide a specimen is a serious offence. It’s extremely important to discuss your case with you and to give consideration as to the reason(s) why you failed to provide the specimen (breath, blood or urine) that was requested by the officer. It may be that upon considering your reason(s), that you may have a defence to the allegation. If we consider that your failure to provide the specimen was reasonable then we will advise you as to your options. Below is a list of examples of a reasonable excuse that have arisen in cases that we have dealt with which have given rise to a defence that was raised:

Specimens of Breath

 

If you are unable to provide a specimen of breath due to not being able to provide a sufficient flow of breath into the breath test and a result is not obtained, then no specimen of breath will have been will be provided and this will be considered as a fail. You are then likely to be charged with the offence of failing to provide a specimen. If you can demonstrate that there was a genuine physical or medical reason as to why they were unable to provide a specimen then this could amount to a defence to the allegation. If we consider that your failure to provide the specimen was reasonable then we will advise you as to your options. Below is a list of examples of a reasonable excuse that have arisen in cases involving breath specimens that we have dealt with which have given rise to a defence –

  • Asthma
  • Chest Infection
  • Long term smoker
  • Small lung capacity
  • Anxiety and panic attacks
  • A physical injury (ie broken jaw)

It must be stressed that with regard to any medical condition that caused you to be unable to provide a specimen of breath, we would advise that an expert report should be obtained to confirm why your physical or mental condition prevented you from providing a specimen.

Specimens of blood or urine

As with specimens of breath, there may be physical or mental reasons why a person is unable to provide a specimen of blood or urine, these can include:

  • Fear or phobia of needles
  • Prostate problems

Again, we would advise that expert medical evidence should be obtained to support any such reasonable excuse

Fail to provide specimen for analysis (drive/attempt to drive) (Revised 2017)

Road Traffic Act 1988, s.7(6)

Level of seriousness Starting point Range Disqualification Disqualification if 2nd offence in 10 years
Category 1 12 weeks’ custody High level community order – 26 weeks’ custody 29 – 36 months

(Extend if imposing immediate custody)

36 – 60 months

(Extend if imposing immediate custody

Category 2 Medium level community order Low level community order – High level community order 17 – 28 months 36 – 52 months
Category 3 Band C fine Band B fine  – Low level community order 12 – 16 months 36 – 40 months

This offence is treated very seriously by the Court, as if convicted, the Court will consider that you intentionally did not co-operate with the request made by the officer for the sample requested.

If you have been charged with or are under investigation in respect of this offence, then please contact us to discuss your case and the options available to you.

 

Our motor law solicitor team cover all areas including Liverpool, Manchester, Lancashire, Cheshire, Clwyd. We specialise in all motor offences including drink driving offences, drug driving offences, speeding offences, penalty point, failing to stop offences, using your mobile phone while driving offences. Contact us for a free initial telephone advice session with an experienced motor solicitor on 07398169441 or email motorlaw@levinslaw.co.uk