One of the worst parts–if not the worst part–of getting a DUI is that you will likely have your driver’s license suspended. Unfortunately, this can impact your ability to commute to work, doctor’s appointments, or even see friends and family whenever you want. That said, if you were recently charged with a DUI, you are most likely wondering how long your driver’s license will be suspended–or even if a DUI may mean that you can never get it back. Please continue reading and reach out to a seasoned Allegheny County DUI lawyer from the Law Offices of George Heym to learn more about how driver’s license suspensions work in Pennsylvania and how our firm can help if you’re currently facing DUI charges. Here are some of the questions you may have:
How long will I lose my driver’s license if I get a DUI in Pennsylvania?
The first thing you should understand is that the duration of your driver’s license suspension will depend on the circumstances of your individual DUI and arrest. For example, if you’re found guilty of a first-offense general impairment DUI (meaning your BAC was between .08% and .099%) you most likely won’t lose your driver’s license at all, however, if you’re found with a BAC between .10% and .159% and it is your first offense, you could potentially lose your driver’s license for 12 months. The same goes for first-offense “highest-BAC” charges (meaning your BAC was .16% or higher, though these charges come with other additional penalties).
If you are found guilty of a highest BAC DUI offense for the second, third, or fourth time in Pennsylvania, you will likely face an 18-month driver’s license suspension, among other penalties. It’s worth noting that for many of these offenses, you are potentially looking at years of incarceration, which, rather obviously, will also prevent you from driving. For example, a fourth DUI conduction can warrant up to 10 years in jail. Retaining the services of a seasoned attorney is paramount if you’re looking to keep your license and stay out of jail.
Can I lose my license if I refuse to take a breathalyzer test in PA?
Many people are under the false assumption that if they refuse to take a breathalyzer test, that they can’t be charged with a DUI. This isn’t true. To start, if you refuse to take a breathalyzer test, even for the first time, you will most likely lose your driver’s license for up to one year. If you refuse to take a breathalyzer test for a second or third time, you will likely lose your driver’s license for up to 18 months. The suspension of your license for a breath test refusal will take effect almost immediately, as law enforcement is required to report it to PennDOT once you are arrested.