What are the Penalties for DWI in New Jersey?

Being arrested and charged with DWI can be an embarrassing, humiliating and often frightening experience. If you have been found to be driving a motor vehicle in the state of New Jersey with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or more, you will be arrested and charged with DWI. DWI is a very serious offense, and state lawmakers have continued to increase the penalties for drunk driving due to public pressure, and in attempt to protect the population. Due to the severity of penalties associated with a DWI, and the aggressive manner in which prosecutors will pursue a DWI conviction, it is crucial that you have an experienced Bergen County DWI attorney on your side.

Upon conviction, a first time DWI offender can expect to pay fines up to $400, be imprisoned for up to 30 days, face a 90-day suspension of his or her driver’s license, be required to attend a mandatory DWI education course and have an insurance surcharge added to his or her auto insurance policy. In cases where the individual’s BAC is 0.10 or higher, or an accident took place with injuries or fatalities, the penalties will be increased significantly.

A second time DWI conviction within a 10-year period will mean a fine between $500-$1000, a mandatory 48-hour incarceration, with the potential for an additional 90-days, a 2-year driver’s license suspension, mandatory DWI education/rehabilitation treatment, an insurance surcharge of $1000 per year for 3 years, and the installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) for up to 3 years after time served, fines paid, and license restored. A third time DWI conviction will result in the offender facing fines up to $1000, imprisonment for 180 days, a 10-year driver’s license suspension, admission to an alcohol treatment program, a $1500 insurance surcharge per year for 3 years, and the installation of an IID for up to 3 years after license restoration. A DWI judge also has the ability to revoke a driver’s vehicle registration, require him or her to perform community service, and order the payment of a variety of different charges and fees.

If you have been arrested or charged with DWI, immediate contact The Law Offices of Benjamin G. Kelsen, Esq. LLC, and schedule to meet with one of our skilled DWI attorneys at once. Whether you are facing a first time DWI charge, or you have had previous convictions, our firm has the experience and determination you want on your side. We know where these cases could be successfully challenged, and should review the facts of your case immediately. If you need a DWI defense lawyer that knows how to navigate the court system successfully, contact us today.


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Benjamin G. Kelsen Esq. provides efficient legal representation for Criminal Defense & DWI Defense Cases in Hackensack, Garfield & Teaneck.

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