Drivers under 21 years old arrested for drinking and driving in Pennsylvania face serious consequences. If you have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol as a minor, don’t hesitate to contact a Scranton DUI lawyer at Mazzoni Valvano Szewczyk & Karam. We have successfully handled underage DUI cases in PA involving college students charged with underage drinking and other DUI charges involving underage drinkers.
Under Pennsylvania law, drivers 21 and older are considered legally drunk if they have a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of over 0.08 percent. However, if you’re 20 or younger, you can be arrested for DUI or driving while intoxicated (DWI) if your BAC exceeds just 0.02 percent. That means if you just had one beer 26 minutes ago and you’re a man that weighs 150 pounds, you could be arrested for underage drinking even according to our unofficial drink calculator.
The consequences of an underage DUI conviction in PA vary. Factors include how much alcohol you had in your system and whether you ever had been previously convicted of a DUI in Pennsylvania.
The penalties for an underage DUI conviction in PA often include:
If this is your second underage DUI offense in PA, the penalties will likely be even more severe, including:
The penalties are different for an underage driver. If you are under 18 years old, your case will likely be handled by Pennsylvania’s juvenile court system. If someone was killed in your drunk driving accident, you will likely be tried as an adult.
Under the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Zero Tolerance Law, in addition to the penalties listed above, a vehicle does not have to be involved for an individual to lose their driving privileges.
Under the law, it is illegal for an individual under age 21 to consume, possess, or transport alcohol or to lie about their age to obtain alcohol such as through a fake ID.
Contact Mazzoni Valvano Szewczyk & Karam as soon as possible. We can explain all the legal options available to you after you explain to us exactly what happened. Every DUI arrest is different. That’s why we need to meet with you and hear your story before offering any advice. We won’t shuffle you in and out as quickly as possible. We honestly want to learn as much as we can about the circumstances surrounding your DUI arrest. That way, we can offer useful advice that applies to your specific circumstances.
We will strive for an acquittal or dismissal of charges, but also may be able to minimize the impact of the conviction. If this is your first underage DUI conviction in PA, you might be eligible for Pennsylvania’s ARD program, in which you’re enrolled in a probation-like program, after which your criminal record is wiped clean and there’s no record of your arrest.
Just because you were arrested and charged with drunk driving does not mean you will automatically be convicted of DUI in Pennsylvania. An experienced attorney at our law firm can aggressively investigate your case and search for evidence to clear your name. We will scrutinize the evidence police have against you. It’s not unusual for law enforcement to make mistakes in collecting and storing evidence, such as the results of drunk driving tests.
We leave no stone unturned when defending clients facing charges. Let us help you get started on building your case. Contact us or call (570) 348-0776 now for a free consultation.
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