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Types of Pennsylvania DUI penalties

| May 10, 2021 | Criminal Defense

Pennsylvania has established three tiers of penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs. Your legal consequences depend on your blood alcohol content at the time of arrest and other factors. 

Review the penalties for Pennsylvania DUI if you face a court date for illegal impairment. 

General DUI

This category applies if your BAC was between 0.08% and 0.99% when an officer stopped you for DUI. With no prior DUI convictions, you could receive: 

  • Court-ordered substance use screening and rehabilitation 
  • Probation for up to six months 
  • $300 fine 

If you have prior DUIs, you could also receive a suspension of your driver’s license, elevated fines and even possible jail time. 

High-impairment DUI

If you had a BAC of 0.10% to 0.159%, Pennsylvania’s high impairment penalties apply. Even without a history of DUI, you could receive: 

  • Court-ordered substance use screening and rehabilitation 
  • Jail for up to six months 
  • $5,000 fine 
  • 12-month license suspension 

Subsequent convictions can result in up to five years in jail, extended license suspension and elevated fines. 

Highest-impairment or controlled substance DUI

If your DUI charge involves a controlled substance or if you had a BAC higher than 0.16%, the highest penalty tier applies. You could receive: 

  • Court-ordered substance use screening and rehabilitation 
  • Jail for up to six months 
  • $10,000 fine 
  • 12-month license suspension 

These penalties also apply to breath test refusal. Pennsylvania’s implied consent laws require drivers who use the state’s roads to submit to blood alcohol testing if asked to do so by a law enforcement officer.