DUI Attorney in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Don’t underestimate how DUI charges can wreak havoc on your life. These criminal charges carry harsh penalties, including steep fines, the loss of your driving privileges, and the possibility of jail time. You also have to deal with the police and prosecutors, who will apply Pennsylvania’s drunk driving laws to the fullest extent. In this situation, a capable Pittsburgh DUI lawyer is your best, most reliable ally.

The Pittsburgh DUI-DWI attorneys at SMT Legal know the stress you’re feeling and can guide you through the aftermath of a DUI charge. Our attorneys have decades of legal experience and have earned many awards and honors for their work in the criminal justice system, including being named as one of the Top 100 National Trial Lawyers, and being named among America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators.

A DUI attorney from our firm can protect your rights throughout the legal process, communicate with the police and prosecutors on your behalf, and develop a robust DUI defense strategy. Call our law firm now at (412) 765-3345 or complete our contact form for a free consultation.

Why You Need an Allegheny County Drunk Driving Defense Attorney

Facing a DUI charge in Allegheny County, even for a first offense, is a serious issue. Pennsylvania’s DUI laws are complex, and the penalties are severe. A skilled DUI attorney understands these laws and can guide you through the legal system toward a better outcome.

An experienced drunk driving attorney will thoroughly review the details of your case, looking for any weaknesses in the prosecution’s evidence. They can challenge improper procedures, such as unlawful stops or faulty breathalyzer tests. These actions can lead to reduced charges or even the dismissal of your case.

Without a lawyer, you risk facing the maximum penalties and a more stressful legal process. Court procedures can be confusing, and making a mistake could hurt your case. A DUI conviction can impact your life for years, affecting your job, insurance rates, and personal reputation. Hiring a criminal defense attorney ensures you have a dedicated advocate fighting for you during this intense chapter of your life. Don’t face these charges alone—get the legal help you need.

Pittsburgh DUI Laws

Pennsylvania law says it is illegal to drive or control a vehicle if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08 percent or higher within two hours of driving. Pennsylvania defines DUI offenses in three tiers based on an offender’s BAC level and the presence of any controlled substances in their body.

The first tier, general impairment, applies if your BAC is at least 0.08 percent but less than 0.10 percent. The second tier is for BACs between 0.10 percent and 0.159 percent. The highest tier is for BACs of 0.16 percent or higher. Additionally, driving under the influence of drugs, whether prescribed or illegal, also counts as a DUI.

Penalties for DUI convictions can be severe. They include fines, a driver’s license suspension, mandatory alcohol education or treatment programs, and possible jail time. First-time offenders might face lighter penalties, but repeat offenders and those in higher BAC tiers will see harsher consequences. For minors, commercial drivers, and school bus drivers, the BAC limits are even stricter, and the penalties are more severe​.

What To Do if the Police Arrest You on Suspicion of DUI

If the police arrest you on suspicion of impaired driving, it’s crucial to know how to protect your rights. Here are the key steps you should follow in this situation:

  • Stay Calm and Polite – Keep your composure and be respectful to the officers. Arguing or acting aggressively can make the situation worse.
  • Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent – Politely tell the officers that you choose to make use of your right to remain silent. Avoid saying anything that prosecutors could later use against you.
  • Request a Lawyer – Ask to speak with an attorney as soon as possible. Having legal representation early on can help you protect your rights.
  • Comply with Testing – Pennsylvania’s implied consent law means you must comply with breath, blood, or urine tests. Refusal can lead to additional penalties.
  • Document Everything – Try to remember details about the arrest, such as the officers’ names, badge numbers, and what they said. Write down these details as soon as you can.
  • Avoid Discussing Your Case – Don’t talk about your case with anyone except your lawyer. Remember, police and prosecutors can use your conversations with friends or family against you in court.
  • Follow Legal Advice – Listen to your attorney’s advice and follow their instructions carefully. They have the experience to navigate the legal system and defend your case effectively.

Defense Strategies in Pittsburgh DUI Cases

A solid defense strategy is essential to beating DUI charges in Pittsburgh. Here are some potential ways an attorney might defend you:

  • Challenging the Traffic Stop – If the police did not have a valid reason to pull you over, any evidence gathered during the stop might be inadmissible. Your attorney can question the legality of the initial stop.
  • Questioning the Accuracy of Testing Devices – Breathalyzers and other testing devices must be properly calibrated and maintained to deliver accurate results. If there were issues with the equipment, the results might not be reliable. Your lawyer can investigate and challenge these results.
  • Improper Handling of Evidence – The prosecution must follow strict procedures for collecting and handling evidence. Any mishandling or contamination of samples can weaken the case against you.
  • Involuntary Intoxication – If someone else drugged you without your knowledge, you might have a defense of involuntary intoxication.
  • Medical Conditions – Certain medical conditions can mimic signs of intoxication or affect breathalyzer results. Conditions like diabetes or acid reflux might provide a basis for challenging the charges.
  • Field Sobriety Test Issues – Field sobriety tests can be subjective and influenced by factors such as uneven surfaces or poor lighting. Your attorney can argue that the test conditions were unfair or that you failed the test for reasons unrelated to intoxication.

Contact Our Pittsburgh DUI Lawyers Now

The sooner you speak to one of our DUI attorneys about your case, the more we can do to help you avoid the worst possible outcomes. Call SMT Legal now or reach out online for a free case evaluation.

Directions to Our Office

We can meet with you wherever you are to discuss your case. However, if you want to talk to one of our motorist defense attorneys, here’s how to find our office:

From the North:

  • Take I-279 S toward Pittsburgh.
  • Use the left lane to take exit 2A for I-579 S/Veterans Bridge toward I-376 E/Monroeville.
  • Continue onto I-579 S.
  • Take the 7th Avenue exit toward Downtown.
  • Turn right onto 7th Avenue.
  • Turn left onto Smithfield Street.
  • Continue on Smithfield Street; our office at 114 Smithfield Street will be on your right.

From the South:

  • Take I-79 N toward Pittsburgh.
  • Merge onto I-376 E via exit 59A toward Pittsburgh.
  • Take exit 71B for Grant Street.
  • Turn left onto Grant Street.
  • Turn right onto 7th Avenue.
  • Turn left onto Smithfield Street.
  • Continue on Smithfield Street; our office at 114 Smithfield Street will be on your right.

From the East:

  • Take I-376 W toward Pittsburgh.
  • Take exit 72B to merge onto Blvd of the Allies.
  • Use the left two lanes to turn slightly left onto Grant Street.
  • Turn right onto 7th Avenue.
  • Turn left onto Smithfield Street.
  • Continue on Smithfield Street; our office at 114 Smithfield Street will be on your right.

From the West:

  • Take I-376 E toward Pittsburgh.
  • Use the left lane to take exit 71A for Grant Street.
  • Turn right onto Grant Street.
  • Turn right onto 7th Avenue.
  • Turn left onto Smithfield Street.
  • Continue on Smithfield Street; our office at 114 Smithfield Street will be on your right.

Pittsburgh Legal Blog