Being charged with a DUI in the state of Pennsylvania is taken very seriously, especially when it comes to habitual offenders. Not only could a driver lose their driver’s license, but a person driving under the influence could spend time in jail and be ordered to pay some pretty hefty fines. Each time a person is pulled over for driving under the influence, the penalties only become steeper. Here is how the system works in Pennsylvania when it comes to DUIs:
DUIs in Pennsylvania
First DUI offense.
There is usually no mandatory jail time unless there is an accident or the defendant’s blood alcohol level exceeds .10.
- The fine and/or penalty that you will be assessed will be $300.
- An Interlock ignition device (IID) is a device that is attached to the dashboard of a vehicle, requiring a driver to blow into it. If the system detects alcohol, then the vehicle will not start. An IID will only be required if the driver refuses to undergo chemical testing.
- At this point. the driver’s operating privilege will not be suspended unless the blood alcohol level was over a .10.
Second DUI offense.
The minimum amount of time that a person will spend in jail will be 5 days, with a maximum of 6 months. The specific amount of jail time depends on the circumstances.
- The fine and/or penalty that will be assessed for a second DUI offense is $300 – $2,500.
- Driving privileges will be revoked for anywhere between a 12 and 18 months.
- An IID may be required for 12 months after the defendant has served their license suspension.
Third DUI offense.
A person could spend as little as 10 days in jail, and as long as 2 years.
- The fine and/or penalty varies and will be anywhere from $500 – $5,000.
- Driving privileges will be revoked for a 12-18 month period of time.
- An IID is required for 12 months after the driver has served their suspension.
Blood alcohol content (BAC) will be the determining factor for the penalties that a convicted driver will be required to pay. The state of Pennsylvania utilizes a tiered system. For drivers under the age of 21, 0.2 (tier 1) is the minimum BAC necessary to be charged with a DUI. For adults 21 and older, the minimum BAC is 0.8. Higher tiers are as follows:
• .10 – tier 2
• .159 – tier 3
• .16 and higher – tier 4
The state automatically expects driver’s to comply with Pennsylvania chemical testing requests. Penalties for refusing to undergo chemical testing increase for each subsequent DUI offense.
The driver’s license is automatically suspended for a one-year period.
There is a twelve to eighteen-month license suspension.
An eighteen-month driver’s license suspension period.
A ten-year period of time will be used when determining the number of DUI offenses a person has had.
If you are convicted of a DUI in Pennsylvania, don’t hesitate to contact an attorney to fight for your rights.