If this is the first time you have been charged with a crime, your feelings of fear and uncertainty are normal. The idea of going to jail or prison is scary. Fortunately, Pennsylvania allows many first-time offenders to avoid jail time and prevent a mark on their criminal record.
The program that provides this opportunity is called Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition, or ARD. Started in the 1980s, the ARD program is designed to keep nonviolent first-time offenders out of jail so their lives are not ruined by one bad decision. People who successfully complete the ARD program can avoid a conviction and can ultimately have their arrest record, including their fingerprints and arrest photographs, expunged.
An Opportunity For First-Time Offenders In Pennsylvania
ARD is frequently offered to those who are facing drunk driving charges. However, a variety of other types of offenses may be dealt with through ARD. Essentially, nearly any nonviolent first offense (except traffic violations) may be addressed through ARD.
I am Michael F. Dunn, Attorney at Law, and as a lawyer experienced with the ARD program in Montgomery County, I have helped people enter and complete the program following offenses such as:
- First-offense DUI/DWI
- Drug possession and other types of drug charges
- Check fraud or credit card fraud
- Domestic violence
As a skilled criminal defense attorney, I will look at all possible options to defend you against the charges you are facing. Since 1980, I have provided thorough representation to people accused of DUI and many other crimes. I combine personal attention, honesty and a commitment to aggressive defense to help my clients get the results they need to move forward with their lives. If the facts of your particular charge show that the case should be dismissed, I will fight for that. If not, I will do everything possible to get you into the ARD program or otherwise minimize the charge’s negative impact on your life.
Call To Let Me Answer All Your Questions About The ARD Program
If this is your first criminal charge, come talk to me about Pennsylvania’s ARD program. For a free initial consultation with an ARD program lawyer, please call 215-572-0955. You can also contact my Glenside law firm online. I represent those accused of crimes in Montgomery County, Philadelphia, Delaware County, Chester County and throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania.
The requirements of the ARD program vary according to the type of offense with which you were charged. For example, one condition of ARD for a person accused of embezzlement will be making restitution (paying back the money). Those charged with spousal abuse will need to attend counseling and anger management sessions. At the end of the program, the case against you can be dismissed and your record can be wiped clean.