The Philadelphia DUI Law Blog

Understanding DUI / Research in Philadelphia

Who exactly are drug recognition experts and what are their duties? Are mobile apps that warn you about DUI checkpoint locations legal? Do you have the right to refuse a breathalyzer test ? And just how reliable and accurate are those field sobriety tests, anyway? These are important questions that confused and scared defendants charged with DUIs often have to face. Understanding DUI laws will help prepare you in the event that you are pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence. Keeping up-to-date on the latest DUI research and understanding how impairment affects your driving may also save your life.

Knowledge is power, but if you have been charged with a DUI, it’s also a good strategy to consult a Philadelphia DUI attorney about your case. Lawyers often provide free consultation before committing to a lawyer-client relationship.

Recently in Understanding DUI / Research in Philadelphia:

Do You Have a Right to Police Dashcam Videos?

Dash-cam videos can serve as an incredibly powerful piece of evidence in proving a defendant's innocence. Just recently, a Pennsylvania man successfully fought a traffic ticket via personal dash-cam footage.

But what about police dash-cam videos, do you have a right to access them?

In general, the public and defendants are entitled to access police dash-cam videos. But the process of obtaining such videos is much trickier.

3 Smartphone Breathalyzers Have an App for DUI

Need an on-the-go breathalyzer for DUIs? There's an app for that.

This new class of pocket-sized Breathalyzers which connect with a smartphone which may help mobile users track their drinking. These Breathalyzer devices require connecting a smartphone via the headphone jack or through wireless Bluetooth connection and promise an accurate reading of your BAC on the go. While you should never drink and drive, these devices could help you avoid a DUI by monitoring your drinking throughout the evening.

With smartphone Breathalyzers growing in popularity in the smartphone market, here are three devices to consider:

3 Ways to Challenge a DUI Checkpoint Stop in Pennsylvania

Chances are, as a Pennsylvanian, you know what a DUI checkpoint looks like. You may have even gone through one. If you haven't, it's likely that you will. DUI checkpoints are generally not welcome by drivers, regardless of their sobriety. Police officers often make even the most innocent of drivers nervous, the checkpoints are unexpected, and they stall traffic.

Unfortunately, they are completely legal. Despite many states actually implementing laws that forbid DUI checkpoints, Pennsylvania is not one of them. This means that, as a driver in Pennsylvania, you'll likely encounter one.

If you do, and for some reason you are arrested, is that the end? Not quite. Here's a breakdown of DUI checkpoints, and three ways you can challenge one in Pennsylvania.

7 Ways a DUI Conviction Can Cost You

The costs for a DUI can be much more than spending a few nights in jail.

In fact, even for the most straight-forward drunk driving cases, the toll on your wallet can be significant. There are a variety of costs directly and indirectly related to a DUI.

Here is a look at seven of these costs of a drunk driving conviction:

The Best Ways to Get a Lawyer for Your DUI Case

If you have been arrested for drunken driving, you will definitely want to get a lawyer for your DUI case.

However, with so many lawyers to choose from, how do you know how to choose the best one?

Most attorneys have impressive credentials and it can be hard to distinguish one lawyer from the next. However, by following these five tips, you may be able to narrow down your search:

Driving Drunk Can Lead to DUI, Other Charges Too

Let's say that you've been arrested for drunken driving. You may know that you face criminal DUI charges. However, did you know that you could face penalties for many additional violations as well?

That's because individuals who violate drunken driving laws also frequently violate other closely related laws.

And in these cases, you could face penalties even if you're cleared of the DUI charge that got you into trouble in the first place.

Here's a look at five common charges associated with a DUI:

DUI Trial: Evidence Against the Driver

For adults, the legal limit for driving drunk is generally 0.08%. But for a variety of reasons, prosecutors may not have evidence at a DUI trial of a defendant's specific blood alcohol level. Still, this has not stopped prosecutors from charging and convicting drunken drivers.

Individuals stopped for DUI may refuse a blood alcohol test under the belief that they can avoid prosecution without evidence specifying their blood alcohol level. Some individuals may even pass a blood alcohol test.

However, it is common for prosecutors to go after these individuals by using other evidence. Here's a look at some common evidence that prosecutors may use against a drunken driver besides blood alcohol content:

Pennsylvania DUI and Employment Background Checks

If you have been convicted of a DUI in Pennsylvania, the residual effect may be the DUI showing up on employment background checks and hindering your chances of getting a job.

You hear a lot about minimum jail sentences and monetary fines associated with drunken driving convictions. However, these penalties usually only affect you for a short while.

In contrast, a DUI on your record could potentially impact you for the rest of your life.

5 Common Defenses to Drunken Driving

When you are charged with drunken driving in Philadelphia, you may think it's hopeless. After all, it may be your word against the arresting officer's -- not to mention the results of a blood alcohol test.

However, you should take some comfort in knowing that there are some common defenses to drunken driving that actually work.

Keep in mind that when you are defending yourself against a DUI charge, there is a lot at stake including your possible freedom and monetary fines. So even if you think one of these defenses may apply, it's best to work with an experienced DUI attorney when arguing your defense.

Understanding DUI Plea Bargains in Philadelphia

If you are charged with a DUI in Philadelphia, you should be aware that you face very serious penalties. However, just because the statutes may provide for jail stays and monetary fines, you may be able to reach a DUI plea bargain and avoid the most serious penalties.

In fact, DUI cases rarely make it all the way to trial. Instead, the vast majority of DUI defendants reach a plea deal to resolve their criminal cases and many of these defendants avoid jail completely.