First Offense DWI Lawyer Trenton
If you have been charged with a first offense DWI violation in New Jersey, you face severe penalties; you could lose your driver’s license for an extended period of time and you could even be sentenced to jail time. The good news is that most first-time offenders are able to avoid jail. However, ensuring the best outcome to your DWI case typically requires the assistance of an experienced DWI defense lawyer.
Hamilton DUI Defense Attorneys
The drunk driving lawyers at Cohen & Riechelson have more than 40 years of experience serving clients in Mercer County, including Ewing, Hopewell Township, and Lawrence. Our litigators include a New Jersey Certified Trial Attorney who has been recognized by his peers as one of the best lawyers in the state. Additionally, our DWI defense team is familiar with local courtroom procedure, so we can guide you through the complex NJ legal process and offer unique insight into prosecutorial strategies. Call CR today to discuss your first offense DWI charges.
New Jersey DWI Statute: N.J.S.A. 39:4-50
First offense DWI violations are addressed by N.J.S.A. 39:4-50. The standard blood alcohol concentration (BAC) measurement in New Jersey and other states is .08 percent. Underage drivers and commercial vehicle drivers are subject to a lower BAC threshold. Anyone caught driving over the legal limit is subject to severe penalties.
First Offense DWI Penalties in Mercer County
The penalties for a first-time offender with a BAC between .08 percent and .10 percent include:
- Jail: Up to 30 days
- Driver’s License Suspension: 3 months
- Fine: $250–$400
- Other Monetary Penalties: More than $500
- Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) Surcharges: $1,000 per year for 3 years
- Alcohol Education: 12–48 hours of alcohol education classes and treatment at the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC)
The penalties for a first-time offender with a BAC of.10 percent or higher include:
- Jail: Up to 30 days
- Driver’s License Suspension: 7 months–1 year
- Fine: $300–$500
- Other Monetary Penalties: More than $600
- MVC Surcharges: $1,000 per year for 3 years
- Alcohol Education: 12–48 hours of alcohol education classes and treatment at the IDRC
- Ignition Interlock Device: Must be installed on all motor vehicles for 6 months–1 year if BAC was .15 percent or higher
Failure to meet any of the requirements, such as attendance at alcohol education classes or payment of MVC surcharges, can result in indefinite suspension of your driving privileges.
Subsequent Offenses: Additional Penalties
A conviction for first offense DWI will also have an effect on sentencing for subsequent DWI violations. A second DWI offense within a 10-year period will result in enhanced penalties. Similar penalties, and enhancements, are imposed for DUI drug violations.
Out-of-State Drivers: Additional Penalties
Out-of-state drivers who are convicted of a DWI in New Jersey will be subject to further penalties when they return to their home state. That’s because New Jersey will report a conviction to your home state.
Speak with a Princeton NJ DUI Defense Attorney
When it comes to the DWI law in New Jersey, a single mistake can have severe consequences. That’s why it is imperative that you contact the experienced drunk driving defense attorneys at Cohen & Riechelson. Call or email us now to schedule a free consultation at our offices in Hamilton or Pennington, NJ.