Some people in Pennsylvania have DUIs from other states, leading them to wonder how their out-of-state convictions might affect their driving privileges in the Commonwealth. Since Pennsylvania shares borders with six other states, out-of-state DUIs are fairly common issues. Many people choose to drive to New York or New Jersey to spend time at the beach or to see tourist attractions, and some of them end up being charged for driving under the influence. Here is some information about how Pennsylvania might treat your out-of-state DUI conviction from a DUI lawyer in Chester County at DiCindio Law.
The Driver’s License Compact
Forty-six states, including Pennsylvania, have signed on to the Driver’s License Compact. This is an agreement between the participating states to share traffic violation information so that each state will be aware of violations people have on their driving records in other states. The goal of the DLC is to prevent people whose licenses are suspended in one state from going across the state line to get a new license in a different state. The DLC also allows Pennsylvania to consider its residents’ out-of-state traffic offenses, including DUIs, and suspend their licenses in Pennsylvania if warranted.
If your out-of-state DUI conviction is your first one, Pennsylvania will treat it as a general impairment DUI under 75 Pa.C.S.3802(a)(2), which prohibits driving or operating a motor vehicle when your blood alcohol concentration is between 0.08% and 0.10%. In Pennsylvania, this DUI offense does not result in a suspension of your driver’s license.
You should not lie about your out-of-state DUI conviction on your application for a Pennsylvania driver’s license. While the Commonwealth will not suspend your driver’s license for a first out-of-state DUI conviction, the state might cancel your driver’s license if it learns that you lied on your application for a driver’s license about suspensions and violations in other states.
If your out-of-state DUI offense is more than 10 years old, a second DUI within Pennsylvania will be treated as a first DUI offense. However, if your out-of-state DUI conviction happened in the past 10 years, your second offense within the state of Pennsylvania will be treated as a second DUI for penalty purposes unless the statute under which you were convicted in the other state does not mirror Pennsylvania’s DUI statute.
Other types of out-of-state criminal convictions will result in a license suspension in Pennsylvania, including vehicular homicide, having an alcohol-related accident causing serious property damage or serious injuries, and others. States participating in the DLC report felony offenses committed when people were operating motor vehicles. While Pennsylvania might see minor traffic violations from other states, including speeding or running stop signs, the Commonwealth will not assess points against your license for those types of violations.
The four states that do not participate in the DLC include the following:
Under 75 Pa.C.S.1581, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will only consider serious out-of-state traffic offenses and will not assess points against your license for minor out-of-state traffic violations.
If you are convicted of any of the following offenses in another state, however, your license will be suspended for 12 months in Pennsylvania:
- Manslaughter while driving a motor vehicle
- Felony conviction related to using a motor vehicle
- Leaving the scene of an accident involving injury or death
- Treatment of out-of-state DUIs in Pennsylvania
If your out-of-state DUI conviction is your first offense, your license in Pennsylvania will not be suspended since it will be treated as a first-offense general impairment DUI. However, if your out-of-state DUI is your second offense, your license will be suspended in Pennsylvania for 12 months. This suspension period will be consecutive to any suspension period assessed by the other state.
If My License is Suspended in Pennsylvania, Can I Get a New License in Another State?
If your Pennsylvania license is suspended, you cannot get a driver’s license in a DLC state until you have taken care of your suspension in Pennsylvania. DLC states share information about driver’s license suspensions with each other to prevent people from evading driver’s license suspensions by crossing state lines.
Similarly, if your license is suspended in a different state, you will not be able to apply for a license in Pennsylvania until you have cleared your suspension in the other state. Under 75 Pa.C.S.1503, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation will not issue a driver’s license to anyone from out of state who has a suspended license.
Effect of Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition in Pennsylvania on an Out-Of-State DUI
If you previously completed ARD in Pennsylvania within the past 10 years for a Pennsylvania DUI and then receive a second DUI in another state, your license will be suspended in Pennsylvania for 10 years. This is because participating in ARD is counted as a DUI for licensing and sentencing purposes even though your DUI that resulted in ARD was dismissed.
Effect of an Out-Of-State DUI on a Second Offense in Pennsylvania
If you have had a DUI conviction in a DLC state within the past 10 years and are convicted of a DUI in Pennsylvania, the state will sentence you as a second DUI offender. DUI convictions that occur in DLC states are treated as if they happened in Pennsylvania for sentencing purposes.
For example, if you were convicted of a DUI in Missouri five years ago and are then convicted of a high BAC DUI in Pennsylvania with a BAC between 0.10% and 0.159%, you will face the penalties for a second high BAC DUI in Pennsylvania, including a minimum of 30 days in jail, a fine of $750 to $5,000, a 12-month suspension of your license, and other penalties.
Get Help From a Criminal Defense Lawyer
If you have an out-of-state DUI conviction and are facing charges of a DUI in Pennsylvania, you should consult with a DUI lawyer in Chester County as soon as possible. Call DiCindio Law today at 610.430.3535.