Montgomery County DUI/DWI Lawyers
Experienced Pennsylvania DUI Lawyers Represent Defendants Charged with Drunk Driving in Montgomery County and Bucks County, PA
Though it may feel like it was the end of the world when you were arrested for a DUI in Pennsylvania, it does not have to be. Driving under the influence of any mind-altering substance in Pennsylvania is now called DAI, or “driving after imbibing,” though most people still refer to it as DUI or DWI. Regardless of what it is called, drunk driving in Pennsylvania is a serious criminal offense with severe penalties that include the loss of your driver’s license, monetary fines, and even jail time. That is why it is critical that you act quickly following a DAI arrest in Lansdale, PA.
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The good news is that the experienced DUI lawyers at the Lansdale law firm of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg, and Gifford are prepared to help minimize the damages of a DAI arrest. We have successfully defended countless clients against drunk driving charges throughout PA and, in many cases, have gotten the charges dismissed entirely. Contact us anytime to discuss your Pennsylvania DUI case or to schedule a free consultation at one of our offices in Newtown or Colmar, PA.
Drunk Driving Law in Pennsylvania: Driving Under the Influence (DUI) and Driving After Imbibing (DAI)
In 2003, the Pennsylvania legislature overhauled its drunk driving laws under new state legislation known as Act 24. With the passing of Act 24, the crime of driving under the influence (DUI) is now called DAI, or “driving after imbibing” (DAI). This legislation also lowered the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels to include drivers who consider themselves sober or merely “buzzed” and not outright, stumbling drunk.
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Pennsylvania, like most other states, has close to a zero-tolerance policy for drivers operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of any mind-altering substance, including alcohol, illegal drugs (such as marijuana), and prescription and over-the-counter drugs.
The legal limit for blood alcohol content in Pennsylvania is 0.8%, which means that a person who only had “a couple” drinks before getting behind the wheel can potentially be arrested for DAI. The severity of a DAI sentence depends upon several factors, including the level of your blood alcohol concentration and whether it is your first offense or you have previously been convicted of DAI/DUI. Moreover, if you refused a breath test prior to being arrested, you may have created more problems for yourself: you are likely now facing charges for both DAI and Breath Test Refusal.
Experienced Pennsylvania DUI Attorneys Defend Clients Against Drunk Driving Charges
These are some of the DAI / DUI / DWI cases, and related cases, that we handle:
- First Offense DUI
- Multiple Offense DUI
- Failure to Take a Breathalyzer
- Underage Drinking
- Commercial Driver DUI
Severe Penalties for Drunk Driving in PA
When it comes to DAI in Pennsylvania, the penalties are severe. A first-time DUI misdemeanor requires a mandatory minimum of a 48-hour incarceration in jail that could be as long as six months, depending on other factors. The fines for a first-time DAI offense can also be as high as $5,000, along with a 12-month driver’s license suspension. With multiple convictions and higher BAC, you could lose your driver’s license forever, serve several years in prison, and pay fines in the tens of thousands of dollars. For specifics on how a DUI affects your driving privileges, review the Pennsylvania Point System Fact Sheet.
With the qualified representation of the Lansdale law firm of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg, and Gifford, it may be possible to suppress evidence or negotiate reduced charges and a lighter sentence in your DAI case. In many cases, our experienced drunk driving defense lawyers have been able to get our clients’ DWI charges dismissed.
Pennsylvania Drunk Driving Defense Lawyers Dispute Breath Test & Blood Test Evidence in DAI Cases
A skilled Lansdale drunk driving defense attorney may be able to challenge your DAI charges. For instance, if the arresting officer did not have probable cause to stop your vehicle, such as in the case of illegal checkpoints or roadblocks, an experienced DUI attorney can potentially dispute whether the police had the right to pull you over in the first place. If it is proven that they did not have any legal reason to stop you, your DAI charges may be dismissed. Keep in mind that if you were not observed committing a crime or traffic violation prior to being pulled over, the police may not have had the right to stop or question you.
Following a stop for suspicion of drunk driving, police may ask you to take one of the following tests:
- Field Sobriety Test: If you appear to be intoxicated, police may ask you to perform certain field sobriety tests on the side of the road. These tests can include walking heel to toe in a straight line or reciting the alphabet.
- Portable Breath Test: Commonly called a “breathalyzer,” a portable breath test typically requires you to blow into a device so that the police officer can acquire a reading of your level of intoxication. Based on the results of this test, the police officer may arrest you for drunk driving.
- Blood Work: In many cases, after you are arrested for a DAI, DWI, or DUI in Pennsylvania, you are taken to a hospital where blood is drawn to more accurately determine your BAC level. You may also be given blood testing if you are injured in a DUI accident.
These are the three most common methods for acquiring evidence intended to prove guilt in Pennsylvania DAI cases. However, it may be possible to prove the police failed to follow proper policies and procedures during DUI tests. Or it is possible that the breathalyzer was improperly calibrated, causing a false reading. It is further possible that the results of your blood test were inaccurate. And it may also be possible for an experienced DAI defense attorney to show that your body tolerates a higher level of alcohol than the average person, meaning that you were not legally intoxicated.
Alternative Penalties in Pennsylvania DUI Cases
If you are convicted of a first-time DAI offense in Pennsylvania, your assigned judge may have the discretion to sentence you to an alternative punishment other than jail. One alternative punishment for a first-time, nonviolent offender in Pennsylvania is an Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) probation supervised program. When you complete this program, your criminal record is expunged (cleared) and it is basically as though you were never convicted of drunk driving. In other cases, if you do not qualify for the ARD program because you have a previous criminal history, an alcohol and drug rehabilitation or treatment facility may be another alternative to jail.
Negotiating on your behalf with the prosecutor and the police officer typically requires the skill of an experienced Lansdale DAI attorney. Moreover, if your case makes it to trial, it is in your best interests to have an attorney from the PA law firm of Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg, and Gifford present your case to the judge and help you avoid a conviction in the courtroom.
Charged with Drunk Driving in Pennsylvania? Contact Our Experienced DAI Defense Lawyers Today
If you have been charged with DAI/DWI/DUI in Southeastern Pennsylvania, don’t assume that you have to plead guilty. Contact the skilled Lansdale DUI defense lawyers at Rubin, Glickman, Steinberg, and Gifford today. We will fight vigorously to defend you against the charges and help you avoid the most severe penalties for drunk driving in Holland, North Wales, Newtown, Lansdale, or elsewhere in Southeastern PA.
Call or tell us what happened on our contact form for a free initial consultation about your Lansdale PA drunk driving charges and we will get back to you immediately. We have offices located in both Colmar, PA and Newtown, PA, and can even meet with you in your home or hospital if you are unable to travel. Call now.