Being arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New Jersey is not only frightening, but it can also be very embarrassing. Most drivers regret DWIs as one of the biggest mistakes of their lives. The situation becomes complicated when the driver is not from New Jersey. People from many of the surrounding states often find themselves traveling or commuting through New Jersey. Out-of-state drivers who are charged with DWIs in New Jersey are often left wondering what will happen to their license.
Being from a different state does not absolve you of responsibility for a DWI in New Jersey. However, it does mean that the State of New Jersey does not have the power to suspend your license because a different state issued it. In most cases, your DWI will be reported to your home state and you may be penalized accordingly. In this way, you may face consequences from both states instead of just one.
If you are not from New Jersey but were charged with a DWI in New Jersey, call our New Jersey DWI lawyers for out-of-state drivers right away. We can help you understand how your charges may affect you in your home state. For a free legal consultation, call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956.
How to Deal with A DWI in New Jersey as an Out-of-State Driver
DWIs come with a whole host of consequences and penalties that can follow a person for years to come. From heavy fines to license suspensions, you could be dealing with the fallout from a DWI for a long time. However, many people are not sure how a DWI in New Jersey affects their license if they live in a different state.
Living in another state does not mean you can escape the penalties of your DWI. Most states are a part of what is referred to as the Interstate Driver’s License Compact. Under this Compact, when one state issues a DWI, it will notify all other states. This allows the home state of the charged driver to take legal action. Most often, your home state will punish you as if you committed the DWI in that state according to your home state’s rules. This becomes somewhat complicated if your home state has DUI or DWI laws that do not exactly line up with New Jersey’s laws. In such cases, your home state may impose whatever suspension time is normal for your home state rather than New Jersey. Regardless, you will not be able to drive in New Jersey.
Depending on what state you are from, you may face additional consequences imposed by your home state. For example, your home state may wish to impose harsher penalties, like greater fines or longer suspensions, if that is what it would do for a DWI within its own borders. You should contact our New Jersey DWI attorneys for out-of-state drivers to assess the full extent of your potential penalties.
How DWI Laws Are Applied in New Jersey
In New Jersey, DWIs are charged when a driver is caught driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least .08%. It does not matter if your home state adheres to a higher or lower BAC. Also, penalties will be increased for higher BAC levels and for drivers who have a history of DWI charges.
If you have DWI charges in your home state, they may be used against you in your New Jersey DWI hearings. New Jersey will consider past DWI convictions, including convictions in other states that would constitute a DWI if charged in New Jersey. This means your driver history from your home state may be used to calculate your charges in New Jersey.
Your DWI case will not be transferred to your home state for you to deal with. Because your offense happened in New Jersey, you must return to New Jersey to address your charges. This may be problematic for drivers charged in New Jersey but whose home state is very far away. You need an experienced attorney from New Jersey to help you through your situation. Call our New Jersey DWI attorneys for out-of-state drivers for help.
Penalties for DWI Charges in New Jersey
In New Jersey, a first-time offender with a BAC of at least .08% but less than .10% may be penalized by fines of at least $250, a license suspension until you install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, and up to 30 days in jail. These penalties will only increase as your BAC increases or if you have DWIs in your driving history. For a third DWI violation, you could face at least 180 days in jail, a $1,000 fine, and a license suspension of 8 years. Under the Interstate Driver’s License Compact, these penalties in New Jersey could be honored by your home state. Contact our New Jersey DWI lawyers for out-of-state drivers for more information about potential penalties.
Contact Our New Jersey DWI Attorneys for Out-of-State Drivers
If you live outside of New Jersey but were charged with a DWI while traveling through the state, you may face penalties from New Jersey and your home state. Get in touch with our New Jersey DWI attorneys for out-of-state drivers for help with your case. Call the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956 to set up a free legal consultation.