New Jersey DWI Laws
New Jersey Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) Laws
Whether on the New Jersey Turnpike or just leaving a late-night gambling session in Atlantic City, getting pulled over for a drinking and driving offense can be a scary experience. In New Jersey, as in all other U.S. states, impaired driving is against the law and courts take this crime very seriously by imposing steep penalties and driver's license restrictions. It is best to never drink alcohol or take controlled substances and drive, but if you do, here is some information to better educate you on a New Jersey Driving Under the Influence (DWI) charge.
DWI: It's Against the Law
An impaired driving charge in New Jersey is known as a "DWI" or driving while intoxicated offense. Basically, the law prohibits operating a motor vehicle if you are impaired by alcohol or drugs, illegal or prescription, if you are unable to drive your car with the care and caution of a sober person. This is separate from a "Per Se" charge, which requires a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher in your system at the time of driving.
Driving with a Minor While Intoxicated
Want to exacerbate your DUI sentence? Drive with a minor under the age of 18 years old while you intoxicated and you'll face ever harsher penalties. You can also be guilty of a disorderly persons offense and will likely forfeit your right to drive a car for at least six months in addition any other penalties.
This chart lays out the basics of New Jersey's DWI laws:
New Jersey DWI Laws: Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Limits and Implied Consent
|"Per Se" BAC Limit||0.08 Percent|
|Zero Tolerance (Underage) BAC Limit||0.02 Percent|
|Enhanced Penalty (Aggravated) BAC Limit||0.10 Percent|
|Implied Consent to Submit to BAC Test?||Yes|
New Jersey DWI Laws: Select Penalties
|Minimum License Suspension or Revocation (1st, 2nd, 3rd offense)||3 months/ 2 years/ 10 years|
|Mandatory Alcohol Education, Assessment and Treatment||Both|
|Vehicle Confiscation Possible?||Temporary impoundment following arrest|
|Ignition Interlock Device Possible?||Yes (discretionary for first-time offenders; mandatory for high BAC and repeat offenders)|
New Jersey DWI Resources:
- New Jersey DWI Statutes: Driving While Intoxicated (N.J. Stats. 39:4-50); Ignition Interlock (N.J. Stats. 39:4-50.17); Underage DWI (N.J. Stats. 39:4-50.14).
- DUI Overview - Overview of New Jersey DUI offenses and penalties (New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission).
- Ignition Interlock - Basics on court ordered ignition interlock usage, with list of approved providers (New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission).
- Intoxicated Driver Program - Details on required Intoxicated Driving Resource Center programs (New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission).
Arrested for a DWI in New Jersey? Get Legal Help
A DWI arrest is an unpleasant experience and a conviction can have lasting consequences on your future. If you want to learn more about New Jersey's DWI laws, consider speaking with an experienced DWI attorney who can explain New Jersey's implied consent law, per se limits, and more.
You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.