New Jersey DWI Lawyers

DUI Penalties In NJ

The Penalties for First Offenders

The penalties and severity of the DWI charge depend on the blood alcohol content. For first offenders, a BAC of .08 or .09 will result in a three month loss of license.  A BAC of .10 or above will result in a seven to twelve month loss of license.  A BAC of .15 or above will additionally face the imposition of the ignition interlock device.  In addition to the loss of license a first offender will also face high fines typically between $600 to $1,000 dollars and will also face the possibility of up to 30 days in jail.

In additional to these penalties, a first offender will also be required to attend 12 hours in the Intoxicated Drivers Resource Center, also known as the I.D.R.C.

The Penalties for Second Offenders

Unlike a first offense DWI, your BAC does not impact the penalties.  A .08 reading or above faces a two year loss of license.  In addition, you will face the imposition of the ignition interlock device, 2 to 90 days in jail and 48 hours in the IDRC.  A judge may suspend the jail time and order the 48 hours in the IDRC as an overnight requirement in lieu of jail.

The Penalties for Third Offenders

Like a second offense DWI, your BAC does not impact the penalties.  A .08 reading or above will result in a ten year loss of license and 180 days in jail.  The jail sentence is mandatory.  The only exception to the jail requirement is that 90 of the 180 days in jail may be served in an inpatient alcohol medical facility that must be approved by the court.  Any fees associated with enrolling in such a facility is entirely your burden.

School Zone

Being charged with a DWI within 1,000 feet of a school zone is a serious ticket that greatly enhances the penalties you will face in addition to the already severe penalties for the underlying DWI charge.  Typically a school zone ticket will double the fines and penalties including the time period by which your driver’s license may be revoked.

In addition, if the offense occurred in a school zone:

For a first-time drunk driving offense:

  • You will be fined from $500 to $800.
  • You will be sentenced to jail for up to 60 days.
  • Your driver’s license will be suspended for a period of one to two years.

For a second offense:

  • You will be fined $1,000 to $2000.
  • You must perform community service for a period of 60 days.
  • You will be sentenced to jail for 96 hours to 180 days.
  • The court may lower the jail term for each day, not exceeding 90 days, served performing community service.
  • Your driver’s license will be suspended for 4 years.

For a third offense:

  • You will be fined $2,000.
  • You will be sentenced to 180 days in jail.
  • Your driving privileges will be suspended for a period of 20 years.
  • The period of license suspension begins after you have completed any prison sentence imposed upon you.

It is not a defense that you were unaware that the prohibited conduct took place while on or within 1,000 feet of any school property or while driving through a school crossing. It is also not a defense that no juveniles were present on the school property or crossing zone at the time of the offense or that the school was not in session. It is important to note that New Jersey does not grant conditional or work only licenses.

Therefore, once your driver’s license is suspended, you are no longer permitted to operate a motor vehicle in this state until the period of suspension has terminated and you have effectively restored your license. Operating a motor vehicle during the suspension period due to a DWI/DUI could result in an additional suspension of your driving privileges in addition to jail.

Mandatory DWI Fines And Penalties

Alcohol or drug related DUI with BAC of 0.10% or greater
License loss Fines, fees & surcharges Prison term Community service, IDRC & Interlock
7 months–
1 year
$300–$500 fine
$230 IDRC* fee
$100 to drunk driving fund
$100 to AERF*
$1,000/year (for 3 years) surcharge
$75 to Neighborhood Services Fund
Up to 30 days 12–48 hours IDRC*
BAC 0.15% or greater: ignition interlock device during license suspension and 6 months – 1 year following restoration
Alcohol or drug related DUI with BAC greater than 0.08% but less than 0.10%
License loss Fines, fees & surcharges Prison term Community service, IDRC & Interlock
3 months $250–$400 fine
$230 IDRC* fee
$100 to drunk driving fund
$100 to AERF*
$1,000/year (for 3 years) surcharge
$75 to Neighborhood Services Fund
Up to 30 days 12–48 hours IDRC*

Repeated DUI convictions

Offense License loss Fines, fees & surcharges Prison term Community service, IDRC & Interlock
2nd offense within 10 years 2 years $500–$1,000 fine
$280 IDRC* fee
$100 to drunk driving fund
$100 to AERF*
$1,000/year (for 3 years) surcharge
$75 to Neighborhood Services Fund
48 hours–
90 days
30 days CS
12–48 hours IDRC*
Ignition interlock device during license suspension and 1-3 years following restoration
3rd offense within 10 years of 2nd offense 10 years $1,000 fine
$280 IDRC* fee
$100 to drunk driving fund
$100 to AERF*
$1,500/year (for 3 years) surcharge
$75 to Neighborhood Services Fund
180 days Up to 90 days CS (can reduce period of imprisonment)
12–48 hours IDRC*
Ignition interlock device during license suspension and 1-3 years following restoration

Related Offenses

Driving or riding with an open container
Offense Fines   Community service
  1st   $200   –
  2nd   $250   10 days

Driving with a DUI suspension

License loss Fines or surcharges Prison term
Additional
1–2 years
$500 fine
$250/year (for 3 years) surcharge
  10–90 days

Driving while possessing drugs

License loss Fines or surcharges
  2 years   Minimum $50 fine

Driving while possessing drugs

License loss Fines or surcharges
  2 years   Minimum $50 fine

Notes:

  • *IDRC – Intoxicated Driver Resource Center
  • *AERF – Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Fund
  • Underage drinking may cause a six-month delay in getting a license
  • Alcohol and drug-related offenses require completion of an alcohol screening and evaluation program

Failure to pay DUI surcharges will result in

  • Indefinite suspension of driving privileges
  • Action filed in State Superior Court by MVC. This may include securing a lien against your property, garnishing your wages or other similar action

Insurance Surcharge

Your New Jersey driving record is reviewed every time points or other serious violations are added to your driving record. If you accumulate six or more points within three years from your last posted violation, you will receive a $150 Surcharge plus $25 for each additional point. A points based Surcharge can result in a Surcharge for three years.

Additional violations that will result in a Surcharge due for three years:

  • $100 for unlicensed driver or driver with expired license ($300 total)
  • $250 for driving with a suspended license ($750 total)
  • $100 for failure to insure a moped  ($300 total)
  • $250 for operating an uninsured vehicle  ($750 total)
  • $1,000 for first and second driving while intoxicated (DWI)  ($3,000 total)
  • $1,500 third DWI  (if it occurs within three years last offense) ($4,500 total)
  • $1,000 for refusing to take test to measure blood alcohol concentration  ($3,000 total)

DUI Driver License Points

Visit the: NJ DUI Point System

Aiello, Harris, Marth, Tunnero & Schiffman, P.C. are New Jersey DWI defense lawyers, committed to protecting our clients’ rights and have repeatedly demonstrated our ability to succeed in the most challenging and complex drunk driving cases. If you have been arrested on drunk driving charges, contact us today.

Contact our New Jersey DWI lawyers today

The information provided in this segment is offered to provide a general overview of DWI in New Jersey.  If you, or someone you know was recently charged with a DWI in NJ, a refusal or any other ticket, you should contact a New Jersey DUI attorney at our firm.  Our attorneys are made up of former prosecutors both at the county and municipal level.  We are available to speak 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us at (908) 561-5577 or contact us online today. Your initial consultation is free.

Share