If you have been charged with driving under the influence, you may be considering hiring a Pennsylvania DUI attorney. Your attorney is there to help you navigate the confusing process. They can answer questions and provide guidance. It is normal to clam up a bit when talking to an attorney. Bring some questions with you so you can understand what you are facing.
Information to get from a Pennsylvania DUI attorney
Getting charged with a DUI is confusing and stressful. Understanding the process helps alleviate some of the stress. The easiest way to get information is to ask the DUI attorneys some questions. Ask questions related to penalties, defenses, and plea bargains.
People should ask a DUI attorney what penalties they face if convicted. Pennsylvania uses a tiered system for DUI charges. People with a BAC of 0.08% to 0.0999% are charged with general impairment. If the BAC is 0.10%-0.159%, the charge is high BAC. The highest BAC charge occurs when the BAC is 0.16% or higher. Penalties depend on the charge.
The penalties for general impairment include a $300 fine and alcohol safety classes. People can also go on probation for up to six months. Those charged with high BAC face fines of $500 to $5,000. Convicted parties can also spend 30 days to six months in jail, and they may have their licenses suspended for a full year. The judge also might order an interlock ignition device for the vehicle.
Those charged with the highest BAC DUI face fines anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000. People can also spend up to six months in jail and have their licenses suspended for a year. Also, the judge will order mandatory alcohol safety classes. These penalties are for first-offense DUI. DUIs stay on the record for 10 years. The charges are steeper for people who are subsequently convicted.
People should also ask a DUI attorney about possible defenses. Pennsylvania attorneys often argue on the grounds of inaccurate test results, illegal stop or search, or improper testing. These are just a few of the possible defenses. People should talk to their attorneys to learn about possible defenses.
It is wise to explore potential plea bargains with a DUI attorney as well. People should ask the attorney if a plea bargain is a good choice. The attorney might recommend pleading guilty to reckless driving or another less serious offense. This situation does not work for everyone, and in some cases, the attorney has enough evidence to fight the charges in court. However, people must consult the attorney to find out.
Speak to your attorney
If you have been charged with a DUI, you are likely weighing your options. Unless you have a full understanding of Pennsylvania DUI laws, it is difficult to know what to do next. Talk to a DUI attorney. Bring this list of questions and use the answers as a guide.
Contact us here for more information from Kim A. Bodnar, Attorney at Law, or to schedule a consultation in our office in Pittsburgh. NOTE: This is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.
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