1st Time DUI/DWI Offense New Jersey

Have your driving privileges been threatened because you have been charged with a first-time DUI/DWI offense?

My name is Anthony N. Palumbo, criminal and municipal court DUI defense lawyer and partner at Palumbo & Renaud. I am a former prosecutor and current public defender with over 35 years of criminal trial experience, a New Jersey DWI defense lawyer who knows how the system works. It helps to have legal representation by a lawyer who is respected by judges, prosecutors and the police.

Being charged with driving while intoxicated can be overwhelming but I can help you, call 1-866-664-8118 for a free DUI/DWI analysis and review of your arrest . Talk to an experienced criminal lawyer today.

In the state of New Jersey, a first time DWI/DUI offender will be subjected to a mandatory license suspension or revocation. In addition, the DUI/DWI offender will face other consequences including fines and surcharges. Jail time is rare with a first DWI/DUI offense but it could happen. If you need help because you have been charged with Driving under the Influence in New Jersey, contact an experienced DWI/DUI attorney today.

You may have many questions about the possible consequences of a DUI/DWI charge. Will my license be suspended? How will I get to and from my job? What if I already have a suspended license? Will I go to jail? While this page is in no way a replacement to the valuable role an attorney can play in your case, it should help answer some of your immediate questions about first time DUI/DWI offenses. Our firm defends individuals accused of crimes throughout New Jersey including Monmouth County, Union County, Ocean County, Atlantic County, Mercer County, Essex County, Middlesex County, Somerset County and Hudson County.

1st Time offense Penalties

Penalties for a first time offense depend on your Blood Alcohol Concentration ("BAC") and whether you were using drugs in addition to alcohol.

If your BAC was between .08 and .09 and no drugs were involved, you can expect:

  • A fine of $250-$400
  • Detainment 12 to 48 hours
  • Jail up to 30 days
  • 3 month license suspension
  • Surcharges of $325
  • Possible participation in supervised visitation program of probation or community service
  • Possible installation of interlock device 6 months to 1 year

If your BAC was .10 or higher OR you were using drugs, you can expect:

  • A fine of $300-$500
  • Detainment 12 to 48 hours
  • Jail up to 30 days
  • License suspension between 7 months and 1 year
  • Surcharges of $325
  • Possible participation in supervised visitation program of probation or community service
  • Possible installation of interlock device 6 months to 1 year
  • If requirements are not met then, mandatory 2-day term of imprisonment and drivers license suspension until requirements are satisfied

Ignition Interlock Device

When the time period for your suspended license is complete, the court may order the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device in your vehicle. This is a breathalyzer device that is connected to the ignition. In order to turn the car on, you must breathe into the device. Once the device determines that you have not been drinking, the car will turn on. During the time the device is required in your car, you are not allowed to drive any other car but your own. For a first time offense, the device will be installed for a period of 6 months to one year.

Have You Refused A Breathalyzer Test

Refusal to take a breathalyzer test in New Jersey is a separate penalty from a DWI/DUI. Penalties are doubled if you are convicted of both charges. A non school zone first offense DWI and refusal could involve a loss of license of 12 to 18 months. If this charge took place in a school zone the penalties will be doubled. For more information on refusal to take a breathalyzer visit Breath and Blood Test Refusal.

Common DWI/DUI Mistakes

I receive countless telephone calls from DWI/DUI offenders who have made serious mistakes trying to handle their DWI, DUI or Refusal Case on their on. Instead of hiring a criminal defense attorney who has experience defending DWI charges they unsuccessfully:

  • Got advice from a friend who had a DWI but was not an attorney.
  • Plead Guilty and are very unhappy with the consequences, instead of hiring a lawyer to fight their charges.
  • Hired a lawyer who quoted the lowest legal fee but ended up putting in very little time fighting for their rights.
  • Made the mistake of talking to the prosecutor about their DWI case.
  • Tried to handle the DWI charge on their own with the free legal information given on the internet but overlooked the valuable role a DWI attorney plays who knows how the system works.

If you need help because you have been charged with Driving under the Influence in New Jersey, contact an experienced DWI/DUI attorney today. I have been successfully providing drunk driving defense for over 35 years. For an attorney who is skilled at handling drunk driving cases contact me, Anthony N. Palumbo at 1-866-664-8118 for a free initial consultation.