Criminal defense law firm Scranton, Pennsylvania

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DUI/DWI Charges

A Scranton, Pa. drunk driving defense lawyer with a proven track record of getting acquittals

Have you been charged with drunk driving in Scranton, Dunmore or another location in Northeastern Pennsylvania? Afraid you might lose your driver's license or be fined perhaps thousands of dollars? Are you worried about going to jail for your driving under the influence (DUI) charge?

Serious questions demand strong legal action. At Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano, we understand how much your DUI charge matters to you. That's why we're eager to meet with you as soon as possible and start devising a rock-solid legal defense.

Located in Scranton and serving clients throughout the region, our law firm has earned a reputation for successfully resolving cases involving Pennsylvanians and out-of-state drivers charged with DUI. If you are represented by us, we will strive to meet your legal needs every step of the way.

What are the most common types of DUI cases in Pennsylvania?

There are many different criminal charges involving driving under the influence of alcohol. The biggest difference between the charges primarily concerns whether someone has been previously convicted of DUI in Pennsylvania.

Click on the following for a closer look at Pennsylvania DUI charges and related drunk driving issues:

What other issues need to be considered when charged with drunk driving?

The rules and regulations involving Pennsylvania's DUI laws are constantly changing, which is why it's best to speak with an attorney as soon as possible after an arrest. To help you become aware of the legal implications of various DUI charges, visit the following sections of our website:

"How can a lawyer help me if I'm charged with drunk driving in Pennsylvania?"

We know that police sometimes pull over and arrest drivers who have blood alcohol concentrations below the legal limit or who have not even been drinking. But even if you were drinking and driving, you have many legal options available to you. Along with getting your DUI charge dismissed altogether, you could possibly have your penalty reduced and not be fined or incarcerated.

There are many different ways to accomplish your goals. We strive to help clients get an acquittal or a dismissal. In some cases in which there is strong evidence against a client, we work to minimize the damage of the charges. We may be able to work out an acceptable plea bargain that may include probation.

"Why should I hire Mazzoni Karam Petorak & Valvano for my DUI case?"

We don't take a one-size-fits-all approach to DUI cases in Scranton, Kingston, Carbondale or wherever you were arrested for drunk driving. We want to meet with you and take the time to learn about the specific details of your case. After you meet with us and if you decide we are the right attorney for you, we will weigh the prosecutor's evidence against you and apply the law to devise a solid legal strategy. Our detailed, hands-on approach consistently produces positive results in case after case.

First Offense

The traditional penalty for your first DUI conviction in Pennsylvania is a fine of up to $300 and up to 6 months of probation. However, different alternatives now exist in the Keystone State for people convicted of DUI for the first time.

If this is your first DUI conviction, you might be eligible for Pennsylvania's ARD program, According to the terms of this program, you must complete a strictly supervised probation-like program, after which the charges will be dismissed and expunged from your record.

Other legal options exist. Talk to us today, and we can explore the best way to address your DUI arrest or conviction.

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Second Offense

The penalties for a second DUI conviction in Pennsylvania include many harsh measures. These include:

  • 5 days to 6 months in prison
  • $300 to $2,500 fine
  • 1 year suspension of your driver's license
  • Installation of an Ignition interlock device

Such penalties apply to drivers with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 to 0.10. The penalties are more severe for higher BAC readings. In addition, commercial truck drivers and drivers under 21 years old must adhere to even stricter DUI standards.

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Third Offense

If you are convicted of DUI in Pennsylvania for a third time, the penalties are even stricter than they are for people with first or second offenses:

  • 10 days to 2 years in prison
  • $500 to $5,000 fine
  • 1 year suspension of your driver's license
  • Installation of an Ignition interlock device

Having your driver's license revoked for the third time - as well as serving at least 10 days in jail and paying hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines - can be overwhelming. You could lose your job and face other serious consequences. Take your DUI charge seriously. Contact us.

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Ignition Interlock Devices

In an effort to prevent repeat DUI offenders from driving under the influence of alcohol, some judges in Pennsylvania require people convicted of DUI to install an ignition interlock device (IID), which is similar to a breathalyzer. A driver who has been drinking cannot start a vehicle with an IID connected to the vehicle's dashboard.

Even if a driver passes the breathalyzer test on an IID, drivers typically must conduct other random "rolling retests" to verify they have remained sober while driving.

Another safeguard to make sure an IID is functioning properly involves having the device inspected on a regular basis by a licensed technician. And to top it all off, the driver must pay for the IID device to be installed (normally around $100) and leased (approximately $50 to $100 a month).

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License Suspension

Don't assume that you can convince a judge to restore your driver's license if it's suspended for a DUI conviction. Even if you need your vehicle for work, there's no guarantee a judge will grant you a partial driver's license to drive to and from work during your license suspension period.

Not having a driver's license for a year or longer can be a significant hardship, especially if you live in a smaller, rural community in Northeastern Pennsylvania. We understand how difficult life can be without a driver's license - and that's why we work hard to help our clients preserve their driving privileges.

Driver's licenses can be suspended for any number of reasons. For example, you may have refused a BAC test, which results in a one-year license suspension.  If you are convicted, you may get another suspension on top of the one you received for refusing the test. Our Scranton DUI attorneys may be able to help you avoid getting two suspensions.

Don't wait another minute if you were arrested on a DUI charge. Contact our law firm right now for more information. We want to help you.

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