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Pennsylvania DUI Laws

Pennsylvania DUI laws. Drunk driving in the state of Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania DUI Laws


Pennsylvania has set up a system of laws and penalties with regard to drunk driving that cover all levels of intoxication. The penalty your receive will depend on how high or low your BAC is. No one gets off on a DUI arrest without some penalty. That said, it is important for drivers in Pennsylvania to be aware of the state’s implied consent law.

Most states have implied consent laws in conjunction with their DUI laws. In Pennsylvania, the implied consent law goes into affect the minute you drive a motorized vehicle on Pennsylvania Roads. In Pennsylvania, the express consent law is in effect for any person or persons, resident or nonresident, who operates a motorized vehicle in Pennsylvania. You automatically forfeit the right to refuse a blood, urine, or breathe test for alcohol or other controlled substances while in control of a motorized vehicle when you drive in Pennsylvania. The first time you refuse to cooperate with an officer of the law, your driver’s license will be revoked for one year. You will be automatically charged and convicted of a DUI when you refuse to take a BAC test. The penalties will increase with each refusal to have your BAC tested. You should also be aware that refusing to submit to testing may result in harsher penalties.

Most states have two separate actions taken against individuals convicted of a DUI. The administrative penalties deal with the license and registration suspensions and the criminal court deals with the fines, jail time, Ignition Interlock Device (IID), public service and any substance abuse programs you may be required to take.

BAC Levels


The three levels for an adult over 21 in a private vehicle are .08% to .09%, .10% to .15 %, and .16% or higher. There is a zero tolerance level in place for underage drinkers. This means that anyone under the age of 21 will face a DUI charge if they are caught with a BAC above .0%. Over the counter cough medicine taken in the prescribed dosage can put you over this limit. Commercial drivers have a limit of .04%. As the BAC goes up, so do the penalties in Pennsylvania. Repetitive DUI’s will result in harsher fines and penalties. You will face fines, loss of your license and registration, installation of the IID at your own expense as well as other penalties when you are caught drinking and driving in Pennsylvania.

Penalties


The first DUI conviction in the state of Pennsylvania will result in the following penalties. For a BAC of .08-.09% you will face 6 months probation and a $300.00 fine. At this point your license will not be suspended. For a BAC of .10-.15% you will face from 2 days to 6 months of jail time and $500.00 to $5,000.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 12 months. If your BAC is over .16% you will face from 3 days to 6 months in jail and $1,000.00 to $5,000.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 12 months with a limited occupational license possibility after 6 months. You may also be instructed to obtain the IID for your vehicle and you may be requested to attend Alcohol Highway Safety School.

The second DUI conviction in the state of Pennsylvania will result in the following penalties. For a BAC of .08-.09% you will face 5 days to 6 months in jail and a $300.00 to $2,500.00 fine. At this point your license will be suspended for 12 months. For a BAC of .10-.15% you will face from 30 days to 6 months of jail time and $750.00 to $5,000.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 12 months. If your BAC is over .16% you will face from 90 days to 5 years in jail and $1,500.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 18 months with a limited occupational license possibility after 6 months. You will also be instructed to obtain the IID for your vehicle before your license will be reinstated and you will be requested to attend Alcohol Highway Safety School.

The third DUI conviction in the state of Pennsylvania will result in the following penalties. For a BAC of .08-.09% you will face 10 days to 6 months in jail and a $500.00 to $5,000.00 fine. At this point your license will be suspended for 12 months. For a BAC of .10-.15% you will face from 90 days to 5 years of jail time and $1,500.00 to $10,000.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 18 months. If your BAC is over .16% you will face from 1 to 5 years in jail and a minimum of $2,500.00 in fines. Your license will be suspended for 18 months with no possibility of an occupational license. You will also be instructed to obtain the IID for your vehicle before your license will be reinstated.