DUI & DWI in Pennsylvania
You may not realize this but it only takes 1 drink for a woman and 2 drinks for a man to be legally drunk in Pennsylvania. This means that a glass of wine at a family picnic or a drink with dinner may change the course of your life.
You may be able to avoid some of the damage by consulting with a Pennsylvania DUI attorney.
The consequences of a DUI conviction are serious. They include:
- Criminal penalties
- Loss of reputation in the community
- Job loss
- Professional licensure loss
- Civil law suitsand losing everything you own
If you or a loved one has been arrested on a DUI charge in Pennsylvania, this article is for you. In the few minutes it takes you to read this article, you’ll learn:
- Pennsylvania DUI laws
- Pennsylvania DUI punishments
- Potential DUI defenses
- Pennsylvania’s other drunk driving and alcohol laws
When is a Driver Considered to be Legally Drunk in Pennsylvania – What are PA DUI Laws?
PA drunk driving laws are found in 75 Pa. C.S. В§ 3802.
- In general, Pennsylvania drivers are considered to be legally drunk if they have a BAC (blood alcohol content) of .08 or more.
- Commercial drivers are legally drunk if their BAC is .04 or higher.
- School bus drivers are legally drunk with a BAC of just .02 or more.
- Drivers under the age of 21 are legally drunk with a BAC of .02 or more.
What is Pennsylvania’s Punishment for DUI Convictions?
In Pennsylvania, DUI criminal punishments (75 Pa. C.S. В§ 3802) are based upon three factors:
- Whether this is your first offense or a subsequent offense. Criminal penalties for subsequent DUI convictions increase in severity.
- How high your BAC is. The higher the BAC, the harsher the penalty.
- Whether you caused someone else’s death or bodily injury (75 Pa. C.S. В§В§ 3742 and 3742.1).
Common penalties include:
- Jail Time
- License Suspension
- Alcohol Highway Safety School
- Drug And Alcohol Treatment
- Community Service,
- Ignition Interlock
Pennsylvania Drunk Driving Defenses
Your DUI defense lawyer will carefully analyze your case to determine your best defenses. Here are 6 defenses that are commonly used.
- The Breathalyzer results are erroneous and no second and independent test was administered.
- The testing officer wasn’t certified to administer the test.
- The medical personnel drawing blood didn’t follow protocol.
- Police lacked probable cause to stop you.
- You weren’t the one driving.
- The trial judge offers incorrect jury instructions.
Pennsylvania’s Other Drunk Driving and Alcohol Laws
This is an excellent summary of PA’s drunk driving and alcohol related laws.
Pennsylvania Dram Shop Statute – a bar or restaurant can be held liable for injuries is that drinking establishment served a visibly drunk individual or a minor.
Pennsylvania Social Host Law – Adults who serve alcohol to minors can be held liable for injuries to that minor and any injuries that minor causes.
Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor – Any adult who serves alcohol to a minor is guilty of a 3rd degree misdemeanor that is punishable by up to one year in prison and a $2,500 fine. The minimum fine is $1,000 for a first offense.
Licensed Drinking Establishment Serving Alcohol to a Minor – The owner, operator, or server of a bar or restaurant that serves minors alcohol is subject to between 3 months and 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $5,000. The establishment’s liquor license may also be seized.
How to Find a Pennsylvania DUI Attorney
If you or a loved one has been arrested for DUI or in violation of any of Pennsylvania’s other drinking laws, your next step is to contact a Pennsylvania DUI defense attorney now. To find a PA DUI lawyer, you can search our website, www.attorneys.org, or ask friends or the bar association for a referral.