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In Pennsylvania, you have
15 days to act!

In Pennsylvania, you only have 15 days for your attorney to request a hearing to contest your license suspension. Failure to do so will result in an automatic suspension with no further recourse available.

Did You Know?

A DUI conviction in another state can be treated as a prior conviction in Pennsylvania for DUI penalty purposes.

Don't take a chance with your driving record. Contact an experienced DUI attorney today for a free consultation.

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Information on DUI in Pennsylvania

You have 15 days to request a hearing to prevent the loss of your license.

If you are facing a DUI in Pennsylvania, you should take it very seriously.  It is a criminal case which can seriously affect many aspects of your life, including family, your work, your ability to travel to other countries, and of course your freedom.   In Pennsylvania, a specialized DUI attorney can fight your case with more experience than a family friend attorney may be able to.  Pennsylvania DUI laws have evolved into a complicated web of legalese and are best explained by a specialist.  For instance, there are some rules which apply only when other rules are invoked; some rules apply based on age, vehicle passengers, and prior driving history; your prescribed medications may even affect your arrest.  And there are more.  Once you are arrested, you will be faced with two separate legal cases which will be handled simultaneously.  One will be a court case where jail time, fines and fees, and remedial drug and alcohol education and treatment will be handled.  The second case will be under the jurisdiction of PennDOT, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.  They will control the suspension of your driver’s license, along with the reinstatement or revocation of it.  They will also determine the amount of points to be attached to your driving record.  The two cases are not affiliated, so for example, PennDOT may require a penalty even if the court system did not. 

Pennsylvania is an “implied consent” state, which means that as a driver in the state (state citizen or not), you automatically consent to a urine, blood or breath test.  If you refuse, your license will automatically be suspended for an extended period, more than under normal circumstances, and you will not be allowed to apply for a “work permit license”.  The BAC (blood alcohol content) in Pennsylvania is .08 and if you meet this threshold, you will be arrested and taken to jail.  This has nothing to do with your driving ability or whether the officer observed you driving erratically.  It is called the “per se” law, which states that if your BAC is .08, then you will be arrested. 

There is another way you can be arrested as well, though many are not aware of it.  You can be arrested if the officer merely thinks you are driving while impaired.  Of course, the officer is trained to look for indicators, such as weaving in traffic, erratic braking, driving without headlights, slow acceleration at intersections and dozens more factors.  All of these observations will be used against you in court.   When you are pulled over, either say nothing or as little as possible.  The officer has a job to do, and is building a case against you.  The more he or she can get you to say, the bigger the chance you have of incriminating yourself.  Until you are actually arrested, you will not be read your Miranda rights.  Don’t consider going to court to fight these charges without a specialist.  Contact a local Pennsylvania DUI attorney today for a free consultation.

The penalties below are good representations of laws in Pennsylvania, but are not totally inclusive.  Minimally higher BACs reflect significantly higher punishments.  Because the laws are so complicated, there are many factors which can contribute to different outcomes.  Drivers under 21 will face some different penalties, as will drivers with minors present in the car.  Only a qualified local DUI attorney will be able to advise you on specifics and your rights.

PENNSYLVANIA is a member of the
INTERSTATE DRIVER'S LICENSE COMPACT

If you are arrested outside your home state, be sure to ask your attorney how this law will impact you.

The penalties listed below are called for by statute, are not complete, and can often be removed or reduced significantly with the assistance of a local Pennsylvania DUI attorney.

FIRST OFFENSE
• Incarceration – none for BAC .08 to .099, but will include 6 months probation. Refusal to comply automatic 3 days.  A BAC .10 or higher will bring 48 hours to 6 months prison. 
• Fines – minimum $300; refusal to comply up to $5,000
• License Suspension – 12 months suspension for BAC .10 or higher; ARD program no loss of license
• Insurance – SR22 proof of insurance form, mandatory before suspended license reinstated
• Alcohol & Drug Education – mandatory completion of an approved alcohol highway safety program for BAC .10 or refusal to comply
• Community Service – up to 150 hours, per court

ADDITIONAL COSTS AND CONSEQUENCES
• Bail – amount set by the court, required before being released after being arrested
• Towing – average fee $75 to $100 plus impound fees and daily fees for period vehicle is impounded.
• Insurance – required to carry high risk SR22 insurance for three years.  As a designated “high risk” driver, your insurance company will raise your rates significantly.  Expect your insurance rates to double or more.
• Record – DUI conviction can remain on driving record permanently
• Employment – offender may lose time off work and possibly even their job.
• Immigration and travel – restrictions can apply with certain convictions
• Vehicle – possible vehicle seizure for multiple violations
 

Additional offenses will bring significantly higher penalties, up to 5 years in prison and $10,000 in fines.  Don’t take a chance with your freedom.  It is highly recommended that you contact a qualified DUI attorney right away for a FREE CONSULTATION on your case.  It is possible your case CAN be won with the right representation. 

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