A driving under the influence (DUI) charge can be considered either a felony or a misdemeanor. There are aggravating circumstances that can push the misdemeanor charge to a felony. At Ciccarelli Law Offices, we understand the laws surrounding drinking and driving and will use our experience and knowledge to build a solid case for our clients.
Misdemeanor DUIs in Pennsylvania
Most of the time in Pennsylvania, a first-offense DUI is a misdemeanor. Penalties are based on the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC). A misdemeanor DUI conviction often carries fines, probation, and even incarceration.
In Pennsylvania, even though second and third DUI convictions are typically misdemeanors, they can carry heavy penalties. A third offense, within ten years of the other convictions, will be considered a felony.
While there are consequences that accompany a misdemeanor DUI, a felony carries far more life-altering penalties. Aggravating factors can raise a misdemeanor DUI charge to a felony offense. It is essential to consult with a DUI attorney in Pennsylvania if you have been charged with a DUI.
Pennsylvania Felony DUI Charges
A felony DUI conviction carries much more serious consequences. While a DUI is typically a misdemeanor, some aggravating factors can elevate the charge to a felony.
If a DUI causes an injury, it could carry a more serious felony charge. Aggravated assault while drunk also carries a felony charge. And the most serious felony charge is when the incident results in a homicide.
Penalties for DUI Convictions in Pennsylvania
Injuries sustained in the accident do not have to be considered serious to result in a felony DUI charge. The punishment for a felony DUI is as follows:
- If you are convicted of a felony DUI, and it is your first charge, you can still spend six months in jail.
- Second offenses can result in a 10-year prison sentence and a $25,000 fine.
- A second-degree felony, aggravated assault, is the charge when serious injuries to others occur. These could be permanent impairments, disfigurement, or even death. The penalty can be up to 10 years in prison and fines of $25,000.
- A drunk driver can also be charged with homicide after an accident that causes a fatality. This is a second-degree felony that punishes the driver with a mandatory three-year prison sentence with a maximum or ten years. Each count carries a $25,000 fine.
With the right representation building a strong case for you, it may be possible to plea bargain from a felony to a misdemeanor or to have the charges dropped altogether. For you to avoid the harshest penalties, contact a Pennsylvania DUI Lawyer today.
If you Have Been Charged with a DUI Contact Ciccarelli Law Offices
Driving under the influence charges can have a huge impact on a motorist’s life. Your first step should be contacting a Chester County criminal defense lawyer. We will investigate your case and develop a robust strategy in your defense. Our goal is to help you retain as much of your time and resources as possible.
Contact Chester County DUI Defense Attorney
It may be possible to fight your Pennsylvania DUI charge and win, but you’ll never know if you plead guilty without first exploring your options. Ciccarelli Law Offices can review your case to determine whether the local Pennsylvania district attorney’s case has weaknesses that are open to challenge. We will prepare each case as though it is going to trial to insure preparation and thorough understanding and will take the case to trial if you are not satisfied with the resolution that is offered. We strive to be zealous advocates and always try to obtain the best results for our clients.
We are based in West Chester PA (Chester County) in Suburban Philadelphia and represent individuals charged with Drunk Driving, DUI, Driving After Imbibing cases Throughout Pennsylvania including but not limited to Philadelphia, Lancaster, Allentown, Oxford Exton Phoenixville Parkesburg Malvern Coatesville Lionville Chesterbrook Devon Newtown Square Glen Mills Pottstown Downingtown Kennett Square King of Prussia Paoli and beyond.
You deserve a West Chester Pennsylvania DUI lawyer that is available when you need him, treats you with respect, and protects your rights vigorously. For more information or to schedule an appointment with an experienced Pennsylvania DUI Attorney at Ciccarelli Law Offices, by contacting us at (610) 692-8700 or toll free at (877) 529-2422.