In 2012 alone, close to 50,000 people were arrested for driving under the influence in the state of Pennsylvania. In an effort to help reduce these numbers, the PA criminal justice system imposes extremely harsh penalties on offenders who are convicted of intoxicated driving.
If you are found guilty by a judge, you could be facing a long list of short-term and long-term penalties — some of which could continue to haunt you for years. Long after you have paid your fines and completed your sentence, your criminal record can continue to interfere with the pursuit of employment and other opportunities. A drunk or drugged driving conviction can alter the course of your life: you need the support of a dedicated and aggressive attorney who can fight on your behalf.
To schedule your completely free and confidential case evaluation with an experienced Northampton County DUI defense lawyer, call the law offices of Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates today at (609) 755-3115 in New Jersey or (215) 701-6519 in Pennsylvania.
Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates: Northampton County DUI Defense Attorneys
Because intoxicated driving is a such a common cause of arrests in Pennsylvania and throughout the country, many people believe that the charges against them are minor and may not even merit the assistance of an attorney. Unfortunately, these assumptions are incorrect. If you are convicted of intoxicated driving, you could be incarcerated, be fined with thousands of dollars, be forced into counseling, lose your license, and face a host of other penalties. If someone was hurt or killed, you could even be looking at a felony.
The lawyers of Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates have more than 30 years of experience advocating for the people of Northampton County. Our legal team has handled thousands of cases, and benefits from the unique insight of two former prosecutors and a former senior deputy District Attorney. We have a track record of success in court, with more than 98% of our first-time DUI clients receiving no jail time and no criminal record.
Penalties for DUI in Pennsylvania
It’s important to understand that convictions are penalized more harshly as the 0.08% minimum BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) increases to 0.10% and higher. Other aggravating factors which can worsen the situation include having a history of incidents, child endangerment, reckless driving, and driving with a suspended or revoked license.
For a first-time offender with a BAC of 0.08% or higher (but less than 0.10%), penalties could include probation or jail, as well as a $300 fine.
For a second-time offender, the penalties skyrocket:
- Fine: up to $2,500
- Jail: up to 6 months
- License Suspension: up to 1 year
For a third-time offender, punishments increase further still:
- Fine: up to $5,000
- Jail: up to 2 years
- License Suspension: up to 1 year
As you can see, the fines and sentencing terms increase dramatically as offenses accumulate. The potential fine from a second offense to a third offense doubles, while the sentence quadruples.
Pennsylvania’s ARD Program for DUI Offenders
First-time offenders may be able to participate in a unique Pennsylvania program known as ARD (Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition). If a person is admitted into the ARD Program:
- You will not have to plead guilty.
- You will not receive a conviction.
- The charges against you will be dismissed.
Needless to say, these benefits make ARD enrollment hugely desirable. However, not all people can be considered for participation in the program.
In order to qualify for ARD, applicants must meet the following conditions:
- No criminal record (with the exception of an ungraded misdemeanor).
- No death or injury caused by the incident.
It will also hurt your chances of acceptance if you have already participated in the program within the past 10 years.
Ultimately, acceptance or denial is up to the District Attorney. If you are denied, you may be able to request a reconsideration. Your lawyer can submit a letter of recommendation explaining why you would make a suitable addition to the program.
Our Northampton County, PA DUI Lawyers Can Help
A DUI conviction in Northampton County could alter the course of the rest of your life. You could be imprisoned, be forced to pay thousands of dollars, lose your driving privileges, gain a record, and face a host of other aggravating and unpleasant penalties. An experienced lawyer can help. Call the law offices of Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates right away at (609) 755-3115 in New Jersey or (215) 701-6519 in Pennsylvania, or contact us online. Your first consultation is free of charge, so don’t delay: let’s get started exploring your legal options.