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Will My License Be Suspended?

I just got a DUI. How long will my license be suspended?

It depends?

License suspensions in DUI cases are based on two factors:

(1) how many DUI's have you had in the past 10 years and

(2) what was your blood alcohol level.

License Suspensions in DUI Cases


1st Offense

2nd Offense

3rd Offense

4th and Subsequent Offenses

Tier 1

 General Impairment

 BAC .08 to .99

No License


12-Month License Suspension

12-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension

Tier 2

 BAC .10 to .159


CDL Vehicles

General Impairment w/accident/injuries


License Suspension

12-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension

Tier 3

BAC .16 and Higher

DUI Controlled Substances

General Impairment - Refusal

12-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension

18-Month License Suspension


Habitual Offenders

Watch out for the habitual offender penalty. If you receive 3 DUI convictions within a 5-year period, 3 driving under DUI related suspension charges, or a combination of 3 DUI's and DUI related suspension cases, you will be considered a “habitual offender.” That means your driver's license will be revoked for 5 years! Each additional DUI and/or DUI related suspension case will add an additional 2 years to the license suspension revocation.

Chemical Test Refusals

Refusing the chemical test will increase your criminal penalties. But, not only will your criminal penalties be increased (more jail time, larger fine), violating Section 1547 carries an additional penalty: you will get an additional license suspension of at least 1 year just for refusing the chemical test.

If you have a prior conviction for DUI or a prior chemical test refusal, your suspension will increase to 18 months and you have to pay a $500 restoration fee to get your license back. If you had two refusals in the past, the restoration fee is $2,000!!! These penalties are in addition to whatever penalties you may face on the DUI charge. So if you refuse and are convicted of DUI, you may end up with a 24 month license suspension.

Also remember that if you have two previous DUI convictions, a refusal will turn your DUI into a felony offense.

Driving on a DUI Suspended License

If that doesn't sound bad enough, there's more:  when you get a suspension for a DUI offense, your license becomes DUI suspended and remains DUI suspended until you get your license restored. Even if you are serving a suspension for a non-DUI related offense when you get your DUI, once you get a DUI suspension you are considered “DUI Suspended.” That means every time you are caught driving on a suspended license, you are considered “DUI Suspended” even if your DUI suspension didn't start.

If you are caught driving on a DUI suspended license, you are looking at additional jail time. For a first violation, the mandatory minimum penalty just on the driving under suspension, DUI related charge is a 60 to 90 jail sentence and a $500 fine. For a second violation, the mandatory minimum jail sentence is 90 days and the fine jumps to $1,000. If it is your third conviction, the offense turns into a misdemeanor and carries a mandatory minimum jail sentence of 6 months and a $2,500 minimum fine.

If you are caught driving on a DUI suspended license with a blood alcohol content of .02% or greater, the penalties are increased. There is a mandatory minimum sentencing starting at 90 days for the first offense and 2 years for the third offense.

Plus, there's the additional license suspensions of 12 month license suspension that comes with driving on a DUI suspended license.

What Can I Do?

Don't just plead guilty and get ready to go to jail. Call former Pennsylvania State Police lawyer Mike Sherman, an experienced driver's license lawyer in Pittsburgh PA who is ready to thoroughly analyze your case and tell you what defenses are available.

If you are facing a serious charge, don't delay. Call PA DUI lawyer now to set up your free consultation at (412) 471-5000.

Contact Us Today

Mike Sherman Law is committed to answering your questions about DUI defense, homicide by vehicle while DUI, aggravated assault while DUI, homicide by vehicle, CDL defense, driving while on a DUI suspension, blood or breath tests refusals, and criminal defense law issues in Pittsburgh.

We offer a free consultation and we’ll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.