Chester County Underage DUI

According to ABC 6 News in Philadelphia, agencies in Chester County have received additional grant funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) allocated for DUI enforcement. It is illegal for those under the age of 21 to purchase or consume alcoholic beverages in all U.S. states. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration explains that those under the influence of alcohol or drugs have decreased levels of perception and delayed reaction time that make it unsafe to drive.

Underage Drinking in Pennsylvania

Did you know that those under the age of 21 may lose driving privileges for certain alcohol-related offenses even if you are not driving? Those who present false identification to purchase alcohol may be subject to these penalties. Pennsylvania's current minimum penalties for underage alcohol consumption include:

  • Up to a $500 fine and court costs
  • First-time offenders may lose driving privileges for 90 days
  • Second-time offenders may lose driving privileges for one-year

Pennsylvania Graduated Driver's Licensing System

PennDOT data shows that automobile accidents are the leading cause of death among those between the ages of 16 and 24 years old. The state has continued to enhance its licensing process for younger drivers. They recognize that younger drivers have less experience behind the wheel and are often more inclined to engage in risky behavior. Some of the measures taken include nighttime driving limitations, passenger restrictions, and lengthy “learner's permit” periods.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or a Controlled Substance

Motorists are prohibited from operating or otherwise controlling a motor vehicle after consuming enough alcohol to reduce their ability to safely drive. The same applies to those whose blood contains a controlled substance or related metabolites. These include “noxious of solvent” substances and those classified as Schedule I, II, or III drugs.

Blood Alcohol Content BAC Levels[1]

 

General Impairment

.08% - .10%

High Level *

.10% - .16%

Highest Level

Greater than .16%

For Minors

.02%

*All DUI offenses involving underage drivers are subject to the penalties associated with the “high level” BAC tier.

Underage DUI Penalties

First Offense: Between two days to six months in jail, a fine of between $500 and $5,000, and a 12-month loss of driving privileges

Second Offense: From 30 days to six months in jail, a fine of between $750 and $5,000, and a 12-month loss of driving privileges

Third Offense: From 90 days to five years in jail, a fine of between $1,500 and $10,000, and an 18-month loss of driving privileges

Having Legal Representation for Underage DUI Offenses

If you are facing charges of underage DUI should seek experienced legal counsel to protect your best interests and future. Laws in Pennsylvania are increasingly more stringent for these offenses and allow for significant fines, loss of driving privileges, jail time and more. Having excellent legal representation is a critical factor in minimizing penalties and long-term consequences.

Chester County DUI Defense Attorney

After being charged with DUI it is common that you feel anxiety and uncertainty about what to do next. In these situations, it is important to consult with a seasoned defense attorney. Contact the Lento Law Firm today at (888) 535-3686 and rest assured that you will have effective representation.


[1] https://www.legis.state.pa.us/WU01/LI/LI/CT/HTM/75/00.038..HTM

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Attorney Joseph D. Lento has more than a decade of experience successfully resolving clients' criminal charges in Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania counties. If you are having any uncertainties about what the future may hold for you or a loved one, contact the Lento Law Firm today! Criminal defense attorney Joseph D. Lento will go above and beyond the needs of any client, and will fight until the final bell rings.

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