Legal Blog

As experts in our craft we like to provide our past, current and future clients, as well as our community with resources to better help them navigate the complex world of criminal law. Whether you're seeking guidance in one of our practice areas, looking for practical tips to navigate legal challenges or simply finding a deeper understanding of your rights, our blog is designed to be a valuable resource to you. You can search blogs by category or use the search bar to find what you need. You can also visit our FAQ page which has specific questions and answers about Pennsylvania law, procedures, as well as information about our firm. Please note, our legal blog is intended for informational purposes only. While we strive to offer accurate content, the legal landscape is constantly changing and no blog can substitute personalized advice and guidance of a qualified attorney. For a free consultation, please contact us directly.

Repetition Compulsion

What is Repetition Compulsion and its Uses in Mitigating Sentences in Child Pornography Cases? Does history repeat itself?   The simple, as well as sad answer, in the case of many individuals who have been charged with criminal offenses, is YES!!   Many individuals who find themselves entangled in the criminal justice system, whether they are juveniles or adults, have sometimes endured chaotic and tortuous developmental histories replete with emotional, physical and/or sexual mistreatment and abuse.  The impact of these…

Ion Mobility Spectrometry

Ion Mobility Spectrometry

The Tool of Civil Forfeiture The detection of trace amounts of chemicals on various surfaces has become increasingly important in several areas of law enforcement. A key laboratory technique applied to help with the detection and identification of these compounds is Ion Mobility Spectrometry (IMS). IMS instruments have been used in a variety of applications including explosive detection, airport security, chemical weapons monitoring and drug detection (2).  One specific use of IMS in Pennsylvania is as a tool in the…

What Happens if I am convicted of a DUI, but I am not from Pennsylvania?

The law does not distinguish between people who are Pennsylvania residents and people who are residents of other States. This means that you will face the same penalties as a Pennsylvania resident would. A conviction for a DUI can carry a mandatory jail sentence, a mandatory fine, and a mandatory license suspension. If you are sentenced to jail you will have to serve that jail time here in Pennsylvania. In addition, because you are not from Pennsylvania you may not…

What Happens to my Driver’s License if I Refuse a Chemical Test (blood test or breath test)?

If you refuse to take to a blood test or a breath test, PennDOT can punish you through civil law by suspending your driver’s license for a minimum of 12 months. If you have a prior refusal, or a prior DUI conviction, or a prior ARD for DUI your suspension will be for 18 months. PennDOT does this by suspending your privilege to drive in Pennsylvania. If you have a Pennsylvania driver’s license, you will be required to send your…

Can I Fight Losing my License for a DUI Conviction?

In most circumstances you cannot fight the license suspension that results from a DUI conviction. However, there are rare circumstances in which you can challenge a license suspension. Those circumstances include when the Court sent the wrong paperwork to PennDOT or when PennDOT attempts to suspend your license when it should not have been suspended. In these rare situations you can challenge the license suspension through what is known as a License Suspension Appeal. This will allow you to challenge…

Will I Lose my Gun Rights if I am on ARD for a DUI?

If you received an ARD disposition for a DUI, then yes you can own or possess a firearm. Sometimes a condition of ARD is that you do not possess a firearm. In that case, you would not be able to possess your firearm until your ARD supervision was over, even if you have a concealed carry permit.

Can I Own A Gun If I Am Convicted Of A DUI?

The answer to that question depends on the grading of the DUI for which you were convicted. If you are convicted of a DUI that is graded as an ungraded misdemeanor (M) or a misdemeanor of the second degree (M2), then yes you can own or possess a firearm. If you are convicted of a DUI that is graded as a misdemeanor of the first degree (M1) or a DUI graded as a felony of the third degree (F3), then…

Will a DUI Conviction affect my professional license?

The Pennsylvania Department of State, Bureau of Occupational Affairs oversees licensing certain professions, including Nursing, Medicine, Cosmetology, Real Estate, and others. They are also in charge of determining if action to suspend or revoke a professional license is necessary. Currently, a DUI conviction may result in a professional license being suspended or even revoked. Starting at the end of December 2020 the Licensing Rules will change. A DUI conviction should only result in action on a professional license if the…

Can I get sentenced to house arrest if I am convicted of a DUI?

House arrest or in-home detention and sentencing options which allow you to serve part of a jail sentence in your house rather than in a jail. The law has recently changed and “house arrest” is now part of a sentencing possibility known as Probation with Restrictive Conditions. One type of “restrictive conditions” is in-home detention. Regardless of the name, they all refer to the same thing, being able to serve all or part of your jail sentence in your own…

Can I be charged with a crime if I refuse a chemical test?

There is not a specific crime for refusing a chemical test in Pennsylvania. However, if you refuse a chemical test it may affect the level of DUI charge you later receive. If you refuse a blood test, and the police did not obtain a search warrant and are convicted, you could receive the lowest tier of punishment. If you refuse a blood test after a search warrant is obtained, then you will receive punishment at the highest tier if convicted.…