Answers To Your Pennsylvania DUI Inquiries
What Is A DUI in Pennsylvania?
The perception by the courts that you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs while driving could result in a DUI conviction. Generally, however, alcohol-related charges come about because of an individual’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC). For general motorists, a test reading of 0.08 percent will lead to an arrest. For commercial drivers, the level is at 0.04 percent. For school drivers and individuals under the age of 21, the acceptable level must be below 0.02 percent.
What Penalties May You Face For A DUI?
The potential consequences of a DUI are harsh and can result in fines, jailtime and license suspension. Penalties can vary depending upon whether this was your first arrest or a subsequent arrest. There also be a difference in penalties depending upon the level of impairment. For example, a first-time offender with a BAC of 0.08 to 0.099 percent would face six months of probation (along with other penalties) while one with a BAC between 0.10 and 0.150 percent could face anywhere between two days to six months imprisonment and one-year license suspension in addition to other penalties.
The penalties become more severe with subsequent convictions. These penalties for subsequent convictions will generally be accompanied by mandatory jailtime and license suspension. The length of jailtime or license suspension largely depends on other factors.
Aggravating factors can significantly enhance a DUI sentence. Such factors can include a DUI charge accompanied by speeding or reckless driving. Driving under the influence with a child in the vehicle can also lead to increased penalties.
Because each DUI situation is different, it is important to have a skilled attorney there to apprise you of your options and make certain that there is protection of your rights. With the right representation, you may have your charges reduced or even dismissed.
Is There Any Way To Lessen Your Sentence?
There may be mitigating factors that can result in decreased penalties. For example, courts could take into consideration that the impairment came about due to the taking of legally-prescribed medications. Courts may also look at your past driving record and note that there were no past violations. Sometimes courts will lessen a sentence if the individual charged decides to go through a substance abuse program.
If the court feels you are taking the matter seriously, they will be more inclined to apply minimum rather than maximum sentences.
Does A DUI Arrest Mean That There Will Be A Conviction?
No. Like any other arrest, you have the right to contest the charges brought against you. You can challenge the legitimacy of blood and alcohol tests or the manner in which officers conducted field sobriety tests. Also, even for a routine traffic stop, officers need to have probable cause to pull you over. Officers cannot merely pull drivers over randomly to test whether they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Should I Hire An Attorney Following A DUI Arrest?
Yes. The short and long-term consequences of a DUI arrest are too severe to try to address on your own. Plus, DUI cases can be incredibly complex. It requires a knowledgeable DUI lawyer to understand the technology behind blood and alcohol tests. Also, a good lawyer will challenge the admissibility of improper or irrelevant evidence and testimony.
Contact A Seasoned Professional To Represent You
For answers to these and other DUI questions, please contact to set up an initial consultation with a reputable and skilled criminal defense attorney. You can’t afford to waste your time. Call us at or send us an email.