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The information listed below has been provided as a courtesy by:

The Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office

Craig Stedman, District Attorney

50 North Duke Street

Lancaster, PA 17602

(717) 299-8100


The information is not meant to be legal advice, and those arrested/charged with DUI should seek legal counsel for advice concerning their options.

Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol

•A.R.D. (Alternative Rehabilitative Disposition) is a program designed as an alternative to trial, conviction and possible mandatory jail sentence.  Upon successful completion of the program, charges are dismissed.  Eventually, an offender’s criminal record may be expunged.

•Applications for A.R.D. are available at any Magisterial District Judge’s Office, the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office or online at www.co.lancaster.pa.us/da. Please mail application to the Lancaster County Courthouse, District Attorney’s Office, PO Box 83480, Lancaster, PA 17608-3480

I. A.R.D. Qualifications:

  A.  A.R.D. is available for the offenses listed below:

     75 Pa.C.S.A § 3802(a)(1)                      (incapable of safe driving)

     75 Pa.C.S.A § 3802(a)(2)                   

     75 Pa.C.S.A. § 3802(b)(1)                  

     75 Pa.C.S.A. § 3802(c)(1)                  

     75 Pa.C.S.A. § 3802(d)(1-4)              

     75 Pa.C.S.A. § 3802(e)                      

 B.  A.R.D. is NOT available if:                                 

 1.   The offender has been convicted of DUI or accepted into A.R.D. within 10 years of the date of the current offense.

 2.   An accident occurred in connection with the offense where a person, other than the offender, was killed or suffered serious bodily injury.

 3.   There was a passenger under 14 years of age in the motor vehicle the offender was operating.

 4.   The offender did not have a valid driver’s license, and/or was suspended, and/or did not have insurance, regardless of whether charged with specific offenses.

 5.    The offender has an extensive driving record as determined by the District Attorney.

 6.  The offender has more than one prior DUI/ARD or is ineligible by law due to criminal history of violence.

 7.  The offender’s BAC is .24% or above.
      Exceptions can be made in extraordinary circumstances.

 8.  If the offender refused to submit to a chemical test as required under the Vehicle Code in connection with the DUI charge, you must agree not to challenge or appeal any suspension of your operating privilege imposed as a result of your refusal by the Department of Transportation, Bureau of Driver Licensing. If such an appeal was filed prior to filing an application for ARD, the appeal must be withdrawn within fourteen (14) days of the date you submit your ARD application. If you fail to comply you shall be denied admission or removed from the ARD program.

C. Once admitted to the program, drivers’ license suspensions and community service hours under A.R.D. are as follows:







Community Service Hours


.099 or less


0 days




.10 -.159


30 days




.16 - .199



60 days




.20 - .239


60 days






90 days


follow bac




60 days




Occupational limited licenses are not permitted in the A.R.D. Program.      

II. A.R.D. Requirements:

A.  Within 30 days of filing of a criminal complaint, the offender must:

1.   Waive the preliminary hearing.

2.   Complete an A.R.D. application and submit it along with a copy of the criminal complaint and affidavit to the District Attorney’s Office.

3.   Sign a continuance form provided by the District Attorney’s Office.

4.   Schedule a C.R.N. (Court Reporting Network) evaluation with the Office of Probation and Parole by calling 717-299-8016. A C.R.N. is an assessment that evaluates an offender’s drug and alcohol involvement. A certified C.R.N. evaluator will ask you a series of questions.  Responses are scored and included with the A.R.D. application.

5.  You must contact Community Resources at 717-299-8176

B.  Within six months from the date of filling of the criminal complaint, the offender must:

1.    Complete the C.R.N. assessment, as well as a full assessment for alcohol and drug addiction, if the C.R.N. indicates there is a need for counseling or treatment or the BAC at the time of the offense was at least .16%.

2.   Schedule any required Drug and Alcohol treatment with a licensed treatment program.

3.   Schedule and successfully complete the Alcohol and Highway Safety School.

4.    Complete all Community Service.

5.  Pay $600.00 in initial charges to the Treasurer’s Office.  Additional charges will be collected after admittance into the program.

C.  After Sections A and B are completed, the District Attorney’s Office will receive a signed checklist from the Office of Probation and Parole. Once received, the offender will be scheduled for a date for formal admittance into the A.R.D. program.

D.  After formal acceptance into the A.R.D. Program, the offender must remain under supervision for twelve months and must within the first 5 months of supervision:

1.  Successfully complete any required drug and alcohol treatment.

2. Pay any remaining restitution, fines, costs, fees, surcharges, and/or evaluation charges.

To successfully complete the program, offenders must remain under supervision for a period of twelve months, pay all restitution, fines, costs, fees, surcharges, and evaluation charges as determined by the Court, and comply with all other conditions of the program as set forth in this section.

III. Failure to Comply:

A.  Failure to comply with a condition or provision herein will be deemed an unsuccessful completion of the program and the underlying record shall not be expunged.

B.  The Commonwealth may proceed to prosecution if:

a.  The Defendant fails to meet any of the requirements of A.R.D.; or

b.  The Defendant is charged with or commits an offense under Title 18; or

c.  The Defendant violates any other conditions imposed by the court.

IV A.R.D. Review Panel:

The District Attorney’s Office will provide appropriate applicants with an opportunity to address a review panel to determine whether their case should be diverted into the ARD Program.  The goal is to allow this Office to make a more informed decision on the application as well as better assess who is likely to successfully complete the program.

Applicants may bring an attorney and/or witnesses but must be prepared to answer questions from the panel regarding the offense and their background.  Applicants do retain their right to remain silent and their participation in this panel is strictly voluntary.  If they choose to not participate, the decision on the case will be based solely on the written application.

NOTICE: There may be additional alternatives other than those explained in this brochure. If you have any questions, you should seek the advice of an attorney.  If you cannot afford an attorney, contact the Lancaster County Bail Administrator’s Office at 717-295-3584 to apply for a Public Defender. Remember, however, that you only have 30 days to apply for ARD.