Program Details for the Pennsylvania ARD
If you have committed your first drunk driving offense in Pennsylvania, you might qualify for the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program. You won’t enter the state’s criminal justice system if you enter this program. DUIs and drug charges fall under this category. In exchange for meeting other conditions, the state suspends your charges once you have been accepted. Counseling for alcohol use and drug abuse is one of the conditions, as is restitution to the injured party or parties or community service. The program requires you to complete all requirements and is supervised.
ARD Program Benefits
When the ARD program has been successfully completed, the state will dismiss the charges. Your arrest record and participation in the ARD program may be expunged within 30 days of the arrest. At the end of the program, you won’t have been incarcerated, nor will you have a conviction record. Depending on your blood alcohol concentration (BAC), your license will be suspended until you complete ARD. Higher levels result in longer suspensions, but they cannot be more than two years. Usually, suspensions last about a year.
When you complete the program and your conviction is dismissed as well as having your record expunged, you will not have to report your drunk driving if you apply for a job or want to rent an apartment. This is important since those convicted have difficulty finding work or a place to live.
Requirements for ARD Eligibility
To enter the ARD program, you have to meet the following requirements:
- It must be your first offense
- Have never participated in the ARD program before
- The past 10 years have been free of DUIs
- Your DUI crash did not result in serious injury or death to another person
- At the time of the DUI accident, no one under 14 was in the car
You may not qualify for the program if the district attorney sets additional conditions.
What Happens if I Get Charged With a DUI Again?
Getting charged a second time after completing the ARD program makes you a second offender. The court will treat the ARD program as a previous offense, which enhances your sentence. It carries with it a 30 to a 90-day jail sentence.
ARD Removal Reasons
There are several reasons for removal from the ARD program:
- There was another crime you committed.
- ARD conditions or terms had been violated.
- The highway safety school program was not taken and completed by you.
- The restitution you owed was not paid.
- You were ordered to take a program, but you did not do it.
DUI charges will apply again if you are removed from the program. Charges will be brought against you, and you may be convicted. ARD benefits will all be removed.
Travis Law Firm in Pennsylvania
The Travis Law Firm can help you if you have been charged with DUI. Please call (814) 277-2222 if you need assistance. Please feel free to contact us online as well. ARD’s benefits and eligibility requirements are explained, and we work with you to find the most appropriate solution. Our experience will help you to decide whether ARD is right for you. You can count on us to support you every step of the way if you choose to enter the ARD program.