If you have been arrested for DUI in PA you may be eligible for diversion programs that could significantly reduce your sentence and the penalties normally given to people convicted of a DUI.
For certain first time DUI offenders, successful completion of the ARD program allows you to keep your license and have your charges dismissed.
In other circumstances such as multiple DUI arrests, treatment programs may be applicable that offer a far better solution than extended license suspension, heavy fines and jail time.
More information about diversion programs in PA is discussed below.
After speaking with an attorney about your circumstances and the penalties you face, you may decide to plead “not guilty” and fight the charges, instead of entering a plea. However, you should be aware of the options that exist in order to make the best decision for yourself.
An experienced Pittsburgh DUI lawyer understands the diversion programs available and the process of application and acceptance and also whether or not your charges are worth fighting.
When you are arrested for DUI in PA you face numerous penalties that could severely impact your life – license suspension, fines and jail time to name just a few.
Having an aggressive attorney on your side could help in having your sentence reduced or your case dropped altogether.
Read more about the DUI penalties in PA.
Whether you were charged with DUI for the first time, a DUI Controlled Substance, a DUI with an accident, a DUI felony or you have two or more DUIs on your record, you should contact an experienced DUI Attorney for a free consultation.
DUI Lawyer Christopher Thomas can help you learn more about these programs and how they may apply to your individual circumstances.
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The Accelerated Rehabilitation Diversion Program (ARD Program) is designed for first time DUI offenders and offenders of minor drug possession who have no prior criminal convictions on their record
This DUI diversion program could help you avoid a one-year license suspension and jail time. However, admission to the program is determined by the District Attorney and you must apply in order to be considered for acceptance.
Upon successful completion of the ARD program, your attorney can move the court to have your charges dismissed and possibly expunged from your record.
In order to complete the program, you will have to attend drunk driving school (Alcohol Highway Safety School) and pay court ordered restitution, as well as attend meetings, among other stipulations the DA may set.
For more information, contact Pittsburgh DUI Attorney Christopher Thomas for a free consultation.
The DUI Hotel is usually meant for first-time DUI offenders who had a very high blood alcohol content level.
The DUI Hotel is much like it sounds – instead of going to jail, you spend four days in a hotel. But it is less fun than a vacation because you have to take a Breathalyzer test and leave all alcohol and non-prescription drugs behind to participate.
You will go through an intensive treatment program and group therapy with other offenders. The therapy sessions are designed to help offenders better understand their behaviors.
The cost of going to DUI hotel is much less expensive than missing 30 days of work (or losing your job) because you have to go to jail. The program typically costs $500 including meals and hotel stay, or less than $1,000 if you do not want to share a room.
If you are wondering whether you may be eligible for the DUI Hotel program in Allegheny County, contact Pittsburgh DUI Attorney for a free consultation.
The PDQ Program in Pittsburgh is for people who have violated the ARD program (or not successfully completed the program) or for people who have two or more DUI arrests or convictions. You can think of it as the “pretty damn quick” program.
The PDQ Program serves as a treatment program in lieu of a lengthy jail sentence or long license suspension. Successful completion of this program can help people limit the amount they would have to spend in jail otherwise and limit the time for license suspension to only one year.
You will need to attend a hearing to make your plea, after which your license will be suspended for a year. Credit toward your license suspension is only given after jail time completion.
For more details about this program, contact Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer Christopher Thomas for a free consultation.
The Interlock program requires that an interlock device be placed on any vehicles owned by a person convicted of a second DUI offense (or multiple DUI offenses) AFTER they have been convicted and completed one year of a full license suspension.
In order to drive the vehicle, the person must blow into a device attached to the vehicle, which can detect the person’s BAC level. The vehicle will not operate if it detects a BAC level of .025% (about one drink).
This program makes it possible to still be able to drive to work and not have your license suspended for a longer period of time. The system itself costs about $1,000 per vehicle.
If you have been convicted of DUI in Allegheny County, you will need to call the Allegheny County Ignition Interlock Services in order to have the interlock device installed on your vehicle. Read more information on the Ignition Interlock Program in Pennsylvania.
If you are wondering if it what the best options are for your case, you should consult with an attorney — Pittsburgh DUI Attorney Christopher Thomas is here to speak with you — all initial consultations are free.
At SMA Law Group, we defend clients every day who face DUI charges. We fully investigate DUI cases and find fault with the prosecution’s argument in order to get DUI cases dismissed or have the sentencing and fines reduced.
Our Pittsburgh DUI attorneys represent people charged with DUI and DUI Felony in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Armstrong County, Butler County, Westmoreland County, Beaver County, Washington County, Indiana County and all of Western Pennsylvania.