What Can Happen If You are Convicted of a Second DUI in Pennsylvania?

Several DUI regulations have been passed in the last few years which result in issuing stricter punishments for those convicted, including imprisonment, with the goal of deterring people from drinking and driving in the years to come. A DUI record can destroy not only your academic but your professional opportunities, as well, and a record with 2 DUIs along with a history of incarceration, will be extremely difficult to overcome. Here, we have a Pittsburgh criminal lawyer explaining how those convicted of DUI are generally punished in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

DUI Laws in Pennsylvania

The DUI penalties are organized in categories and are dependent on the blood alcohol content, or BAC, of the driver along with his or her record of prior offenses. There are 3 levels for a DUI offense:

0.08 to 0.099% BAC- General Impairment

0.10 to 0.159% BAC- High BAC

0.16% and higher- Highest BAC

Some categories could face severe penalties despite a lower BAC including school vehicle or bus drivers, underage drivers, drivers responsible for injury or property damage, commercial drivers, or the drivers who refrain from breath or chemical testing.

Second DUI Penalties in Pennsylvania

Drivers who are convicted of a second DUI under General Impairment could face:

  • Fine Amount of $300- $2,500
  • License Suspension for 12 months
  • Ignition Interlock for 1 Year
  • Treatment If Commanded
  • Imprisonment for 5 days-6months
  • Alcohol Highway Safety School
  • Ungraded Violation

Drivers who are convicted of a second DUI with a high BAC, penalties include:

  • Fine Amount of $750- $5,000
  • License Suspension for 12 months
  • Ignition Interlock for 1 Year
  • Treatment If Commanded
  • Imprisonment for 30 days to 6 months
  • Alcohol Highway Safety School
  • Ungraded Violation

Drivers with a second DUI under the Highest BAC category face more severe penalties:

  • Fine Amount of $1,500- $10,000
  • License Suspension for 18 months
  • Ignition Interlock for 1 Year
  • Treatment If Commanded
  • Imprisonment for 90 days- 5 years
  • Alcohol Highway Safety School
  • Ungraded Violation

Retaining an experienced criminal defense lawyer will help you achieve a better plea bargain and in some cases, a more lenient sentence from the court.

The defenses remain the same no matter what the number of previous offenses, but an attorney must be more careful with each successive one. He must make sure the offender gives his side of the story to the court. He must also be more careful about how he presents the case, as the prosecutor and judge assume the offender either didn’t learn his lesson the first time or does not care what the consequences are.

It’s still possible to get an acquittal for a second DUI. A well-trained attorney with experience, who has handled hundreds of them, will know what works and what doesn’t, and will make sure your constitutional rights are protected throughout the process.

Repercussions of Second DUI Convictions

Along with the guilt and embarrassment that is attached with a second DUI conviction, the guilty driver is also subjected to a period of imprisonment, ranging from 5 days to 5 years according to their BAC level; a significant increase in insurance rates or possibility of losing your insurance coverage; loss of higher education opportunities including suspension from college and revoking of existing scholarships or difficulty in getting student loans, and so on. Moreover, this will make a permanent stamp on any background check that you will go through in the future, leading to possible hindrances in your career. Potential employers might think twice about hiring an employee with a DUI conviction, or you might also be terminated from your present job.

Hire a Multiple DUI Defense Lawyer

If you have been found guilty of a second DUI, you should immediately consult a Pittsburgh DUI lawyer for multiple DUI offenses. We have highly knowledgeable and proficient lawyers who can give you one of the best legal representations at court, protecting your interests in the best manner possible.

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