While drinking alcohol can be a fine way to unwind or let loose, it can also lead to allegations of drunk driving, which can have a lasting impact on an individual's life. Those who are convicted of this crime can face harsh penalties, a damages reputation, and a criminal record that can haunt them for years to come.
The consequences can be very serious for an individual who is convicted of DUI. This is true even for a first time DUI conviction. The individual could face fines, probation, and lose their driver's license. These penalties increase though for those with multiple DUI convictions. For a third DUI conviction, for example, the penalties, like the penalties for any DUI, depend on the driver's BAC level at the time of the incident.
Those with a BAC between .08 and .10 percent could potentially be sentenced to 10 days up to two years in jail, lose their license for one year, pay a fine between $500 and $5,000, and have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle for a year. If an individual's BAC is between .10 and .16 percent then jail time faced could be between 90 days and five years, fines imposed could be between $1,500 and $10,000, license suspension could last for up to 18 months, and the convicted individual could be forced to comply with one year of ignition interlock. If an individual's BAC is above .16 percent, the person could face one to five years in jail, a $2,500 to $5,000 fine, an 18 month license suspension, and one year of mandatory ignition interlock device usage.
Many people are charged with DUIs in Philadelphia each year. Some of these charges are for first DUI offenses, while others are for multiple-time offenders. When people have prior DUI convictions, the potential penalties for a subsequent conviction could be life altering. However, accused individuals are still innocent until they are proven guilty. Therefore, it may be in their best interests to obtain the legal assistance they may need to protect their legal rights and craft a legal defense that may allow them to avoid the harshest of penalties.
Source: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, ".08 DUI Legislation" accessed on Feb. 20, 2017