Many people understand that the legal ramifications for a DUI can be harsh in Pennsylvania. Depending on the type of DUI acquired, a motorist may be required to undergo mandatory minimum sentences that require the payment of costly fines and jail and imprisonment terms. Despite their severity, the majority of DUI penalties are momentary. Collateral consequences, on the other hand, are oftentimes indefinite.
Collateral consequences are repercussions imposed by society. The unfortunate reality of DUI convictions, and the conviction of any stigmatized crime, is that offenders will have to deal with collateral consequences after being subjected to state DUI penalties. Among the effects of DUI convictions, collateral consequences are the most impactful. These consequences are far-reaching, and will adversely affect many aspects of post-conviction life.
If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI, it's important you understand what you're up against. A conviction for this offense will bring about repercussions you won't avoid, so it's important you make wise decisions now. For the purposes of this article, I will address the collateral consequences that accompany a DUI conviction. Hopefully this insight will compel you to seek legal counsel to defend your charges.
License Suspension / Revocation
In Pennsylvania, a DUI may lead to a license suspension or revocation. Whether your license has been suspended for a short period of time, or it's been completely stripped away from you, this consequence is inconvenient.
The stakes are especially high for commercial drivers with professional licenses. Driving is their livelihood, and a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) is essential for them to do their job. Pennsylvania has a low tolerance for professional drivers who are charged with DUIs. Consequently, they have an increased chance of license suspension and revocation.
A criminal conviction is public record, which means that your charges, and details about the DUI will be accessible to anyone with internet access. In this day and age where background checks are routine, an employer will likely have access to your criminal record. The existence of a DUI on your record may make an employer reluctant to hire you. Even if you already have a job, A DUI conviction can change how your employer perceives you, and can ultimately lead to you being let go.
Most people are aware of the fact that their auto insurance will be affected, but few are aware of the capacity in which it will be. Insurance providers are allowed to substantially increase your monthly rate after a DUI. Many people have experienced being charged thousands of dollars more for their auto insurance premium following a DUI. PennDOT, which can be a driver's friend or foe, provides an explanation of a driver's insurance responsibilities in Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania DUI Attorney
As you can see, a conviction for a DUI can negatively affect your life in an abundance of ways. If you've been charged with a DUI, it' important you immediately contact an attorney. Joseph D. Lento has experience representing clients who've acquired both misdemeanor and felony charges. He's help client get these charges reduced, or completely dismissed, and he can do the same for you. Contact him today.