What is a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania?
A misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania is a driving under the influence (DUI) charge that is not considered a felony. In Pennsylvania, a DUI is considered a misdemeanor if this is your first or second DUI arrest.
What are the penalties for a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania?
The penalties for a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania can vary depending on the circumstances of your case, such as your prior criminal record and whether or not you were involved in an accident. However, the general penalties for a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania include:
- Up to six months in jail
- A fine of up to $5,000
- A 12 to 18 month license suspension
- Attendance at alcohol highway safety school
What are the defenses to a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania?
There are a number of defenses that can be raised to a misdemeanor DUI charge in Pennsylvania. Some of the most common defenses include:
- Inaccurate BAC test: If your BAC test was administered incorrectly, or if the testing machine was not properly calibrated, the results of the test may be inadmissible in court.
- Rising blood alcohol: In some cases, a person's BAC can continue to rise for up to two hours after they have stopped drinking. If you were arrested shortly after you finished drinking, your BAC level may have been higher at the time of your arrest than it was at the time you were actually driving.
- Medical condition: There are some medical conditions that can mimic the symptoms of intoxication, such as diabetes and epilepsy. If you have a medical condition that could have affected your driving, you may be able to raise this as a defense to a DUI charge.
If you have been charged with a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania, it is important to contact an experienced DUI defense attorney immediately. A DUI defense attorney can help you understand your rights and options, and can also develop a strong defense strategy on your behalf.
Additional information about misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania
- DUI is a serious offense, even if it is a misdemeanor. A misdemeanor DUI conviction can have a significant impact on your life, including making it difficult to get a job, housing, or car insurance.
- If you are convicted of a misdemeanor DUI, you will likely lose your driver's license for at least one year. This can be a major inconvenience, especially if you rely on your car to get to work or school.
- Even if you are not convicted of a DUI, you may still be required to attend alcohol highway safety school. This school is designed to teach drivers about the dangers of drinking and driving.
If you have been charged with a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania, it is important to take the charge seriously and to contact an experienced DUI defense attorney as soon as possible.
How to avoid a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania
The best way to avoid a misdemeanor DUI in Pennsylvania is to not drink and drive. However, if you do choose to drink, there are a number of things you can do to reduce your risk of being arrested for DUI:
- Have a designated driver. This is someone who will not drink any alcohol and will be responsible for driving you home.
- Call a taxi or ride-sharing service. This is a convenient and affordable way to get home without having to drive.
- Stay overnight at the place where you are drinking. This is the safest option, especially if you have had a lot to drink.
If you are pulled over by the police and suspect that you may be arrested for DUI, there are a few things you should do:
- Be polite and respectful to the police officer.
- Do not argue with the police officer.
- Do not admit to drinking and driving.
- If you are asked to take a field sobriety test or a breathalyzer test, you have the right to refuse. However, it is important to note that refusing a field sobriety test or a breathalyzer test can result in a driver's license suspension.
If you are arrested for DUI, it is important to contact an experienced DUI defense attorney immediately. A DUI defense attorney can help you understand your rights and options, and can also develop a strong defense strategy on your behalf.