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New Jersey DUI penalties

Penalties for DUI convictions in New Jersey can be severe and may include jail time, mandatory alcohol education classes, community service, fines, loss of driving privileges and the required installation of an ignition interlock device. The severity of these penalties may be exacerbated for repeat DUI offenders and offenders whose blood alcohol content level higher was .10 percent or higher.

According to state law, first-time DUI offenders whose blood alcohol content is less than .10 percent can receive up to 30 days in jail and lose their driver's license for three months. Additionally, first-time offenders must attend a minimum of 12 hours of classes through the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center. There are also various fees and fines, including a $1,000 yearly surcharge lasting three years.

First-time offenders with a blood alcohol content of.10 percent or higher may lose their driving privileges for seven months to a year. Moreover, the state may require them to install an ignition interlock device into their vehicles and pay an assortment of fines and a surcharge.

A second conviction on DUI charges may elicit 30 days of community service and between 48 hours and 90 days of incarceration. That is in addition to higher fines and fees. Offenders convicted a third time within 10 years of their second conviction may lose their driver's license for ten years, receive 180 days imprisonment and be required to install an ignition interlock device. Furthermore, they may receive up to 90 days of community service, higher fines and fees and a maximum of 48 hours at the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center.

On account of these high stakes, it is imperative that drivers accused of impaired driving mount a robust defense against the DUI charges. To start, accused individuals might consider retaining the counsel and resources of a criminal defense attorney.

Source: New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission, "DUI: Driving Under the Influence", October 07, 2014

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