During Seafair, DUI Attorneys and Criminal Defense Lawyers often are contacted regarding the consequences of Boating Under the Influence (BUI). This last year was particularly interesting because, according to some reports, Officer’s were threatening Boater’s that a refusal of the Breath Test would result in a the Trooper referring the case to the Coast Guard and there would be a 5000 dollar fine. Nevertheless, our advice to clients, despite Police threats, would remain the same: If you are stopped and accused of Boating Under the Influence you should exercise your right to refuse all breath tests. For that matter, you should exercise your right to remain silent, request an attorney during questioning, and refuse any test for sobriety. Remember to always be polite.For boating, there is no licensing consequence from the Dept. of Licensing for a refusing to submit to a breath or blood test. Recent legislation is being bantered about that may require licensing for boating and, as such, have licensing consequence but for now there is none. Perhaps the Officer was confused or mislead. Perhaps he was claiming to invoke Federal or Administrative sanctions for the boating violation. More likely, he was trying to scare the accused into doing what he wanted him to. It is not a crime for a Police Officer to lie.As stated above, at this time there is no licensing repercussion from the DOL for the crime of BUI. It is a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of 90 days in jail and a 1,000 dollar fine. The crime of BUI is governed by Revised Code of Washington 79A.60.040. It is worth noting that the Judge does not have to impose mandatory minimum sentences. The same is not true in a DUI case. It is possible that the Judge could impose ignition interlock device but such a decision is in the Judge’s discretion (and only applies if you are found guilty of BUI).Note: Any infraction, could affect your insurance. So there are insurance consequences if you are convicted of BUI. In addition, if you seek a Captain’s License or other commercial license from the Coast Guard, a BUI or civil penalty could have an adverse affect.