One of the most common criminal charges in Pennsylvania (as in other states) is driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or other drugs, since both driving and social drinking are ubiquitous. But it's also one of the most strictly enforced criminal offenses, with penalties including prison time and fines in the thousands of dollars. A DUI conviction also affects one's auto insurance rates, eligibility for certain jobs, and other aspects of life beyond the courtroom.
If it is your first DUI offense, you will be put on probation for up to six months, pay a $300 fine, and be ordered to complete traffic safety school. But penalties get much more severe from there. For instance, you could be sentenced to as much as two years in prison if it is your third or successive offense. A conviction for a DUI with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.16 percent or higher, meanwhile, will get you at least three days -- and up to six months -- in prison if you have no prior offenses.
Learn more about Pennsylvania's DUI laws below.
Pennsylvania DUI Laws: Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Limits and Implied Consent
|"Per Se" BAC Limit||0.08 Percent|
|Zero Tolerance (Underage) BAC Limit||0.02 Percent|
|Enhanced Penalty (Aggravated) BAC Limit||0.10 - 0.159 and 0.16+ (two tiers)|
|Implied Consent to Submit to BAC Test?||Yes|
Pennsylvania DUI Laws: Select Penalties
|Minimum License Suspension or Revocation (1st, 2nd, 3rd offense)||none, 1 year, 1 year|
|Mandatory Alcohol Education, Assessment and Treatment||Assessment & Treatment|
|Vehicle Confiscation Possible?||No|
|Ignition Interlock Device Possible?||Yes|
Note: State laws are always changing through legislative, judicial, or other means. While FindLaw works hard to ensure the accuracy of its legal resources, it's a good idea to thoroughly research the law or check with an attorney to make sure you have the most recent information.
Pennsylvania DUI Resources
Have an Attorney Help With Your DUI Case
If you have been arrested, booked, and charged with a DUI in Pennsylvania, you should know that the prosecution has plenty of resources at its fingertips to get a conviction. You have the right to defend yourself in a court of law, of course, but things will go much smoother if you have an attorney by your side. Before entering into a legal contract, though, it may be in your best interests to meet with a Pennsylvania DUI attorney first.