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Frequently Asked Questions about DUI in New Jersey

Can a DUI be expunged in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, you cannot expunge your DUI record. A DUI arrest/conviction is part of your driving record, not your criminal record. Thus, it will remain a part of your permanent driver’s record. Any points accumulated on your driving record due to your DUI will eventually come off (up to three points can be subtracted from your point total each year). However, your DUI arrest and conviction will remain on your driver’s record permanently.

What are the laws regarding underage DUI’s?

New Jersey, like many other states, has a zero tolerance law when it comes to underage drinking and driving. The BAC for minors (under the age of 21) is 0.01%. Thus, it is a crime for a minor to drive with a BAC at or above 0.01%. If you are convicted of a DUI, your license will be suspended for thirty to ninety days, you will have to commit to fifteen to thirty days of community service, you must participate in an alcohol education and highway safety program, and if you are unlicensed and under seventeen years of age at the time of the incident, you are subject to a thirty to ninety day delay in processing your driver’s license.

What happens if I have a Commercial Drivers License?

In New Jersey, bus drivers, truck drivers and other driving professionals are held to a higher standard than non-commercial drivers when it comes to driving under the influence as established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). A BAC of 0.04% or more constitutes driving under the influence for an individual holding a commercial driver’s license. This is below the normal BAC of 0.08% for all other motorists. If you are a commercial driver convicted of a DUI, your first offense in any vehicle will result in your CDL being suspended for one year, and your basic driver’s license being suspended for three to twelve months. Your second DUI, will result in your CDL being revoked permanently and your basic driver’s license will be suspended for two years.

How do Administrative Review Hearings work in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, the court imposes license sanctions and the Motor Vehicles Commissions (MVC) carries them out. Thus, the New Jersey DMV cannot reverse a municipal court judge’s suspension of your driving privileges and you may not request an administrative hearing to contest the loss of your driver’s license. Further, a DUI conviction remains on your driving record permanently.

Can you get a DUI for being on prescription drugs in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, driving under the influence of drugs is prosecuted in much the same way as driving under the influence of alcohol. If you were driving under the influence of drugs that caused a sufficient level of mental or physical impairment and left you unable to drive safely, you can be charged with a DUI. Further, it does not matter whether the drug is legal or illegal: thus it is possible to be convicted of a DUI for driving under the influence of cold medicine or any other substance that causes impairment. Unlike DUI’s for alcohol, there is no numerical per se blood measurement involving drugs. This means that you can be convicted of a DUI for having even the slightest amount of prescription drugs in your system. The prosecution will attempt to point to evidence such as your driving patterns, physical signs and symptoms, field sobriety tests and chemical test results if available to show that you were driving while impaired.

Can I be stopped and arrested for DWI even if the vehicle was not moving?

Yes, in New Jersey, you can be prosecuted without driving while you are over the legally prescribed BAC limit.

Do I have the right to talk to an attorney before I give a sample?

No, you have no legal right to consult with an attorney prior to providing a chemical sample.

Do I have to give a blood or urine sample?

No, the implied consent law for refusal charges only applies to breath testing in New Jersey. Thus, you cannot be forced to give a blood or urine sample. If you were forced, the results can be excluded in court.

Do I have to submit to a field sobriety test?

No, you do not have to submit to a field sobriety test. You may politely refuse an officer’s request.

Is there plea-bargaining in New Jersey?

There is no plea-bargaining for DUI’s in New Jersey. The Supreme Court has precluded any plea-bargaining regarding DWI or refusal charges. However, if you can establish good reason to reduce your charges or dismiss your case, you may resolve your case without going to trial. 


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