First DUI Offense

Everyone makes mistakes, no matter how good they try to be. For many, one such mistake could be a DUI charge. Sadly, a DUI charge will negatively affect a person’s life, both personally and professionally, even a first-time DUI. Police officers and state troopers all over the United States crack down increasingly harder on DUI. As a result, even those with no previous offenses related to DUI can wind up facing harsh consequences.

First-time DUI Penalties

According to Pennsylvania law, the blood alcohol concentration of a person’s blood at the time of their alleged DUI is the guide to the classification of DUI offenses and punishments.

  • General Impairment: When a person’s BAC is .08 to .09 percent; punishments include incarceration of up to six months and fines of up to $300.
  • High BAC: When a person’s BAC is .10 to .159 percent; punishments include incarceration of two days to six months, a 12-month license suspension, and fines ranging from $500 to $5,000.
  • Highest BAC: When a person’s BAC is .016 percent or higher; punishments include incarceration from 72 hours to six months, a 12-month license suspension, and fines ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.

For a first-time offense, if the DUI charge is classified as a General Impairment charge, there will be no mandatory incarceration or suspension of driver’s license. But, that person may be required to attend AlcoholHighway Safety School, be on probation for as long as six months, and pay up to $300 in fines.

This could change if you refuse a breathalyzer at the time of your arrest. In that case, you might be required to have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle and be restricted to driving only that vehicle for a year. If your BAC was in the High or Highest category, you might receive a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license, a mandatory period of incarceration, and higher fines.

Are There Alternatives to Conviction in a First-time DUI Case?

Sometimes, a conviction in a first-time DUI case is inevitable. But, there are other options available to that offender that will help him keep his criminal record clean. For example, he might qualify for a period of probation and a deferred verdict. If he gets through that probationary period without further charges, his offense can be removed from his permanent record. Depending on the circumstances surrounding his DUI charges, he might qualify for ARD (Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition), a program in Pennsylvania for first-time DUI offenders that, when successfully completed, allows his record to be expunged.

If you or a loved one have been charged for the first time with Driving Under the Influence in or around the city of Pittsburgh, you will need an experienced criminal defense attorney. The Logue Criminal Defense team serves Pittsburgh, PA, and the surrounding areas, including West Virginia and Ohio. To get in touch and schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced Pittsburgh Criminal Defense lawyer from Logue Law Group, call us today at 1-844-PITT-DUI or (412) 389-0805. Or, you can contact us online.

Don’t wait to call! The longer you wait to hire an attorney, the more difficult it becomes for him or her to get a good outcome for you and your case. Call today!

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