DUI Law

If You Are Charged with a Serious Criminal or Traffic Crime You Will Need an Aggressive, Knowledgeable and Effective Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you have been charged with a crime you no doubt are experiencing a wide range of emotions. You are confused about what to expect and what you should do.  Depending upon the nature of the crime charged you could suffer severe penalties, including jail time. At this time in your life it is important to have on your side an aggressive, knowledgeable and effective attorney to guide you through your case. Patrick Svonavec has more than 30 years of experience in providing criminal defense in the courts of Somerset, Cambria, Bedford, Fulton, and Westmoreland Counties. He has provided successful representation in a wide array of Felony and misdemeanor criminal matters including among many others:

  • – DUI Alcohol-related
  • – DUI Drug-related
  • – Driver’s License Suspension
  • – Homicide by Vehicle
  • – Reckless driving
  • – Speeding
  • – Other Traffic Violation

Pennsylvania's Tiered DUI System

Depending on your blood alcohol content (BAC), you can be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) and, the higher the BAC level, the more severe the penalties become. Pennsylvania has three levels of DUI for adults who are not operating a commercial vehicle:

  • – General Impairment (.08 to .099 percent BAC)
  • – BAC (.10 to .159 percent BAC)
  • – Highest BAC (.16 percent and higher)

Each of the above tiers have different criminal offense grading ranging from ungraded misdemeanors to felonies of the third degree. These tiers also have differing minimum and maximum penalties including minimum fines and jail sentences. To navigate the complex Pennsylvania tiered approach to DUI offenses you will be happy to have an experienced criminal law attorney such as Patrick assisting you with your defense. Patrick will explain where your case falls in the tier system and the penalties you would be facing if convicted. If you are a first-time offender, you may qualify for accelerated rehabilitative disposition (ARD) and be able to avoid a criminal conviction.

Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD)

ARD is a program for first time criminal violators of nonviolent crimes to earn a dismissal of the criminal charges pending against them. This program can allow you the opportunity to walk away from this experience with no criminal record. Patrick has assisted many of his clients through the ARD process. Contact Patrick and he can discuss your case and advise you if you qualify for ARD. If you qualify for this program Patrick will fully explain and help guide you through this program.

Commercial Drivers License (CDL)

If you are the holder of a commercial driver license and you have been charged with a DUI even if you were not operating a commercial motor vehicle at the time your CDL driving privilege is subject to suspension. If your DUI is not related to operation of a CDL vehicle you will need an experienced attorney like Patrick to help you preserve your CDL privilege and therefore your ability to continue to earn a living operating a commercial motor vehicle.

Serious Traffic Violations

Patrick has represented hundreds of individuals in traffic related offenses ranging from simple summary level speeding offenses to serious felony level crimes such as Homicide by Vehicle DUI Related. If you are charged with a traffic violation in the Somerset area you will appreciate being represented by an experienced and aggressive attorney.

Other Criminal Matters

  • – Assault
  • – Drug Crimes
  • – Summary Criminal Offenses
  • – Homicide
  • – Manslaughter
  • – Theft
  • – Weapons charges

Patrick has successfully obtained acquittals for many of his clients. He is willing to take the time to explain your options, so you understand the nature of the crime and punishments that you maybe subjected to. Patrick will be with you through each step of your criminal or traffic case. Contact Patrick P. Svonavec at 814-443-4681 or contact Patrick online.