Getting a DUI for the first time can be scary. You could be facing some substantial repercussions. Therefore, it is prudent to understand what your options are in Pennsylvania, so you have a greater likelihood of making it out of this unscathed.
What Are the Penalties?
There are numerous factors that influence what a first-time charge can bring. These factors include:
- Whether you have any kind of previous criminal record
- Whether you are a minor
- How much over the legal limit you were at the time you were stopped
Under the most severe circumstances, you could be facing jail time. In the event it was a first offense, you may only be looking at a license suspension or needing to complete a diversionary program.
Is a Lawyer Required?
Even if you know for a fact you were not driving under the influence, you still need to immediately contact an attorney. You want a lawyer experienced in DUI cases because they will be able to locate weaknesses within the prosecution. An attorney may be able to get your case thrown out entirely or at least get the penalty reduced. Either way, you stand to benefit.
How Will Your Life Be Affected?
Even if this is your first criminal offense, it still has the potential to alter your life. In the event you are convicted of the charges, then you will need to inform future landlords and employers of that fact for years to come. However, if you are acquitted or if the case gets dismissed, then you can move on with your life. It all comes down to how good of a defense your attorney can build.
Even one DUI conviction can affect how you leave your life. You may need to go to jail, pay a fine or be without your driver’s license for as long as a year. Make sure you have an experienced lawyer in your corner assisting you during this time.
Applebaum & Associates Can Help With Your DUI
Even if you are arrested and charged, there is still hope. An experienced criminal defense attorney in Pennsylvania, like Michael Applebaum, can help you aggressively combat charges, and many will provide a free initial consultation. Investing in your own legal representation may help you avoid thousands of dollars in fines, as well as possible felony convictions and state prison time, depending on the severity of the charge.