What happens if you get a DUI in Pennsylvania?

If you face charges of driving under the influence in Pennsylvania, the potential penalties vary depending on the blood alcohol content at the time of the arrest. If convicted, you may receive fines, license suspension, jail time and other legal consequences.

General impairment

Pennsylvania imposes general impairment charges for BAC of 0.08 to 0.099%. If convicted, you could receive:

  • Up to six months probation
  • $300 fine
  • Court-ordered driving school
  • Court-ordered substance use assessment and treatment if indicated

Subsequent offenses can result in six months to two years in jail, fines of $2,500 to $5,000, and license suspension for 12 months.

High impairment

This category covers offenses with BAC of 0.10% to 0.159%. For a first offense, a conviction can result in:

  • Up to six months in prison
  • A fine of $5,000
  • License suspension for 12 months
  • Court-ordered substance use assessment and treatment if indicated

Subsequent convictions carry a fine of up to $10,000, up to five years in prison and an 18-month license suspension.

DUI above 0.16% BAC

You may receive this charge if you have a BAC above 0.16% or are under the influence of a controlled substance at the time of arrest. It also applies if you refuse a breath test at the scene of the arrest.

The penalties mirror those for high impairment, but with potentially higher fines. Drivers at all DUI levels have the opportunity to pursue treatment for substance use disorder. You can pursue this route if your DUI charge results from a struggle with addiction.