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Pennsylvania Criminal Defense Law Blog

Should first-time offenders worry about a DUI in Pennsylvania?

A drunk driving arrest is scary, especially for someone who has never been in trouble with the law or gotten a DUI before. If it is your first drunk driving offense, you may be confused as to what you are up against, but you would be wise to take your situation seriously. There are serious penalties associated with a conviction for a first-time DUI.

If you are facing drunk driving charges, you have the right to defend yourself, no matter what is in your criminal history. A guilty plea or conviction is never your only option, and you would be wise not to face your current situation without the help of an experienced Pennsylvania defense attorney.

What not to do if pulled over in Pennsylvania

It's a Friday night; you have been out with your friends. You know that there is alcohol on your breath and are driving slowly but steadily, staying in your lane.

You see the police lights flashing, signaling for you to pull over. And, it doesn't even surprise you. You are a straight A student, you never do anything wrong. 'Straight-laced', your friends call you. It just makes sense that the one time that you misbehave you get caught.

Wait! Don't plead guilty to that traffic violation ...

Know the consequences before you pay the ticket 

An officer issues a citation or summons for a traffic violation. Most people are inclined to pay the fine and "be done with it." Only it's not the end of the story. Pleading guilty to a traffic offense could lead to license suspension and other problems.

Before you pay the fine or head to court, you need to clearly understand the consequences. Talk to a lawyer who can explain those consequences and your options for fighting the ticket or negotiating a more favorable outcome.

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5 Consequences Of Getting Charged With Drug Possession In College

The peer pressure to use drugs in college can be overwhelming. Sometimes it feels like everyone has tried drugs. Although this is untrue, statistics show that over half of college students have tried marijuana, over 30 percent have abused Adderall and 10 percent have used Ecstasy or Molly. Abuse of tranquilizers like Xanax and Valium are on the rise, quickly becoming one of the most abused drugs in America. With numbers like these it is easy to see why so many college students find themselves in trouble with the law because of drugs. These five consequences will have a lasting effect on a student's life.

1. Jail time and fines

If you are charged with drug possession in Pennsylvania then you will have to spend a lot of money on fines and possibly some time in jail. Marijuana laws have become more relaxed recently, but you can still be charged with 30 days in jail and fined up to $500 for getting caught with even a small amount of weed. Medical marijuana patients will be exempt as laws become official, but anyone without a prescription will still be charged.

Are you willing to wait until you're 70 to clear your criminal record?

Many people plead guilty to criminal charges because they want to move on quickly and put the incident behind them. Unfortunately, many do this without fully understanding the potential consequences of having a criminal charge on their record.

Having a criminal record can disqualify you from educational, career and housing opportunities that can help you start re-building a productive life. If you do not take the necessary precaution of hiring a lawyer, you may have to wait until you are 70 to clear your record.