Pittsburgh DUI Lawyer

When charged with driving under the influence, many tend to underestimate the serious nature of the charges.  Some  assume that a DUI is a minor charge that is easy to fight.  Although DUIs may have been handled with a slap on the wrist in the past, DUI convictions now come with severe penalties.  If you are charged with a DUI, you face possible jail time, fines, and driver license suspensions.  This is why it is important to have an experienced DUI attorney.  Attorneys with experience with drunk driving cases are familiar with the DUI laws, the tests and procedures police use, and the methods district attorneys use to prosecute drunk driving cases.  This knowledge makes it possible for an experienced DUI attorney to get the best result possible for their clients.

During his years of practice, William R. Bickerton has successfully defended individuals charged with DUI. While with the Allegheny County Public Defender’s Office, Attorney Bickerton served as the Office’s DUI Court Attorney. Attorney Bickerton also worked on a team that challenged the constitutionality of Pennsylvania’s current DUI statute. Attorney Bickerton has had tremendous success in getting not guilty verdicts and negotiating plea deals that are fair to his clients.

If you have been charged with drunk driving, contact DUI Defense Attorney William R. Bickerton of  Bickerton & Bickerton at 412.596.8124 for a free case consultation.

 

Pennsylvania DUI Laws:

75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3802: (a) – General Impairment – (1) A person may not operate a motor vehicle after she or he has consumed a sufficient amount of alcohol that she or he is not capable of safely driving; (2) A person may be charged with this type of DUI if she or he has consumed a sufficient amount of alcohol that his or her BAC is between .08% and .10% within two (2) hours of operating a motor vehicle

75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3802: (b) – High Rate of Alcohol - A person may be charged with this type of DUI if she or he has consumed a sufficient amount of alcohol that his or her blood alcohol content is between .10% and .16% within two hours of operating a motor vehicle

75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3802: (c) – Highest Rate of Alcohol – A person may not be in control of a motor vehicle if his/her blood alcohol level is .16% or higher within two (2) hours of operating a motor vehicle

75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3802:  (d) - Controlled substances - A person may not be in control of a motor vehicle if: (1) she or he tests positive for a Schedule I controlled substance  (ii) she or he tests positive for a Schedule II or Schedule III controlled substance and she or he does not have a prescription or (iii) a blood test reveals a Schedule I or II metabolite is in his/her system

75 Pa.C.S.A. Section 3802: (e) – Minors - A person under the age of 21 may not be in control of a motor vehicle after imbibing enough alcohol that his/her BAC is over .02%.

Refusal of Breath, Blood or Urine Test – If you refused to take a breath, blood or urine test after being arrested for DUI in Pennsylvania, your license will be suspended for a period of not less than 1 year and and you will get a mandatory 3 days in jail.  If you refused to take a chemical test, the officer who arrested you will submit a form to PennDOT immediately after the arrest.  After PennDOT receives the form, you only have 30 days to appeal the license suspension.

Confused by the complexity of the DUI laws?  Contact the DUI Defense Attorneys of Bickerton & Bickerton for a consultation.

 

Pennsylvania DUI Penalties

In Pennsylvania, the penalty you receive for a DUI conviction depends on your blood alcohol content (BAC) and the number of prior DUIs you may have.

Under the DUI law, there are three tiers for BAC:

a)  .08%-.099%
b)  .10% – .159%
c)  .16% and higher
*If you have refused to submit to a chemical test, you are automatically penalized at the .16% and higher level. *

Types of Penalties for DUI

1.)    Regardless of your blood alcohol level, you must complete Alcohol Highway Safety.  If you are at the .16% and higher level, you must complete Drug and Alcohol (D&A) assessment and treatment.
2.)For jail time, house arrest (electronic monitoring) and fines, the penalties are as follows:

  • First Offense (No Prior DUI Offenses Within The Last Ten Years):
    • BAC is .08% to .099%:
      • 6 month maximum probation and a $300.00 fine
      • No loss of license or jail time.
    • BAC is .10% to .159%:
      • No less than 48 hours or more than 6 months imprisonment and a $500.00 to $5,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension (A Occupational Limited License (OLL) is possible)
    • BAC is .16% or higher or refusal to give a blood or breath sample:
      • No less than 72 hours or more than 6 months imprisonment and a $1,000.00 to $5,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension (A Occupational Limited License (OLL) is possible)
  • Second Offense:
    • BAC is .08% to .099%:
      • No less than 5 days or more than 6 months imprisonment and a $300.00 to $2,500.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
    • BAC is .10% to .159%:
      • No less than 30 days or more than 6 months imprisonment and a $750.00 to $5,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
    • BAC is .16% or higher or a refusal to give a blood or breath sample:
      • No less than 90 days or more than 5 years imprisonment and a $ 1,500.00 to $10,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
  • Third Offense:
    • BAC is .08% to .099%:
      • No less than 10 days or more than 2 years imprisonment and a $500.00 to $5,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
    • BAC is .10% to .159%:
      • No less than 90 days or more than 5 years imprisonment and a $1,500.00 to $10,000.00 fine.
      • 18 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 18 months.
    • BAC is .16% or higher or a refusal:
      • No less than 1 year or more than 5 years imprisonment and a $ 2,500.00 to $10,000.00 fine.
      • 18 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
  • Fourth Offense:
    • BAC is .08 to .099%:
      • No less than 10 days or more than 2 years imprisonment and a $500.00 to $5,000.00 fine.
      • 12 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
    • BAC is .10% to .159%:
      • No less than 1 year or more than 5 years imprisonment and a $1,500.00 to $10,000.00 fine.
      • 18 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.
    • BAC is .16% or higher or a refusal:
      • No less than 1 year or more than 5 years imprisonment and a $2,500.00 to $10,000.00 fine.
      • 18 month driver’s license suspension
      • Ignition Interlock for 12 months.