Although people often treat driving like a right to which all adults are entitled, the truth is that driving is a privilege for which one must maintain a license and meet other criteria. When the state believes that a driver’s behavior, understanding of the law or demonstrated driving skill does not meet necessary standards, they can refuse to license a driver or even suspend an existing license.
Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs greatly increases someone’s likelihood of getting into a crash and either hurting someone or causing serious property damage. If police officers stop someone whom they believe is under the influence and then arrests them, that driver will face multiple consequences, such as a DUI charge. What will the effect be on their driving privileges?
In some cases, Pennsylvania will suspend your license
Your blood alcohol concentration and driving history both influence the suspension you face. If this is your first DUI arrest and your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.10% or lower, you won’t face the loss of your license. If your BAC is between 0.10% and 0.16% for a first offense, you will lose your license for 12 months.
Those with a BAC over 0.16% will have the same penalty for a first offense but higher consequences for second or subsequent offenses. Those with a lower BAC of 0.10% or less with a previous DUI will face a 12-month suspension. Second offenses at higher BACs can mean up to 18 months of license suspension.
How can you protect your license?
You can sometimes qualify for a hardship license that allows you certain driving privileges after a DUI conviction costs you your license, but the limits of such licensing can still affect your life and your job.
Perhaps the simplest way to protect yourself from the negative consequences of a DUI on your driving rights is to avoid a conviction. Rather than pleading guilty to avoid court, you might want to look at different ways that you could defend yourself.
Even a first conviction that won’t cost you your license now will still leave you at risk of losing your driving privileges in the future. Fighting a DUI charge can help you avoid a criminal record and maintain your driver’s license.