There is not a specific crime for refusing a chemical test in Pennsylvania. However, if you refuse a chemical test it may affect the level of DUI charge you later receive. If you refuse a blood test, and the police did not obtain a search warrant and are convicted, you could receive the lowest tier of punishment. If you refuse a blood test after a search warrant is obtained, then you will receive punishment at the highest tier if convicted. If you refuse a breath test, you will also be in the highest tier if you are convicted. Some jurisdictions will also charge you with obstruction of justice if you refuse a blood test after the police obtain a search warrant.
There are civil penalties for refusing a chemical test. Those include a separate 12 to 18-month license suspension and a large “fee” to get your license restored. This is not a criminal issue and can happen whether the police charge you with a DUI or not. This suspension is consecutive to any suspension you receive if you are convicted of a DUI. A suspension for the DUI conviction can range from 12 to 18 months. See our resource guide for more information on sentencing and license suspensions. resources page