New Jersey DUI Laws & Penalties

New Jersey DUI

New Jersey DUI law (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a) Driving under the influence) is when a person operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of both. The state of intoxication in New Jersey is described as a "substantial deterioration or diminution of the mental faculties or physical capabilities. In New Jersey you can be convicted of DUI solely on the evidence gathered from the NJ police officer observing your mental state and behavior.

In addition, the state of New Jersey also includes a 2nd charge, commonly referred to as the 'per se' law. This makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above .08%. New Jersey does not require any physical proof of intoxication beyond a chemical test reading .08% or greater to be convicted on this charge. No evidence of intoxication is required beyond the chemical test.

New Jersey DUI First Offense

BAC Between .08% - .10% (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a)(1)(i.)

  • Fine:  $250-$400
  • Jail:  Max 30 days
  • Drivers License Suspension:  3 months
  • Community Service:  none
  • Ignition Interlock System:  The courts may order 6 months to 1 year after driving privileges are restored


BAC Greater Than .10% (N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a)(1)(ii.)

  • Fine:  $300-$500
  • Jail:  Max 30 days
  • Drivers License Suspension:  7 months up to 1 year
  • Community Service:  none
  • Ignition Interlock System:  The courts may order 6 months to 1 year after driving privileges are restored

New Jersey DUI Second Offense

(N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a)(2)

  • Fine:  $500-$1,000
  • Jail:  48 consecutive hours - 90 days max
  • Drivers License Suspension:  2 years
  • Community Service:  30 days
  • Ignition Interlock System:  1-3 years after driving privileges restored OR revocation of registration and license plates for 2 years

New Jersey DUI Third Offense

(N.J.S.A. 39:4-50(a)(3)

  • Fine:  $1,000
  • Jail:  not less than 180 days (court has discretion to lower based on inpatient alcohol treatment programs)
  • Drivers License Suspension:  10 years (20 years if violation happens in a school zone)
  • Community Service:  none.  Probation requirements however may include community service obligations
  • Ignition Interlock System:  1-3 years after driving privileges restored OR revocation of registration and license plates for 10 years

New Jersey Implied Consent Laws

  • Chemical testing is allowed. Breath test is permitted.
  • The officer is required to advise the defendant of the penalties for test refusal and their right to the test results and independent testing.
  • There are no immediate license sanctions based on the test results.
  • Test refusal results in a 6 month to 10 year license revocation. Violations that occur at school crossings can carry up to a 20 year revocation.
  • There is nothing in the statute regarding testing admissiblity.

Chemical Testing

  • Breath test must be performed by a certified person in accordance with the methods approved by the Attorney General.
  • There are no statutory provisions regarding blood testing.
  • The defendant has the right to have an independent chemical test done by a qualified individual of their choice. The cost for an independent chemical test is the defendant's responsibility.
  • Test results must be made available to the defendant and their New Jersey DUI attorney upon request.

Note: The look back period for New Jersey DUI offenses is 10 years. Meaning if you have more than 1 DWI offense within ten years the latter is classified as a 2nd offense.

Working with a New Jersey DUI attorney can help you get the least possible amount of penalties including lesser drivers license suspension time and fines.  

Click here for a free discussion with one of our skilled aggressive New Jersey DUI lawyers . 

SR22 Insurance Considerations after a New Jersey DWI

New Jersey DUI offenses are serious offenses with some pretty serious consequences.  Another ongoing consequence not mentioned above is the need to maintain high risk auto insurance, SR22 insurance, for a period of 3 years after a DUI conviction in New Jersey.

DUI Arrest Help.com has partnered with the largest and most trusted SR22 insurance provider in the state of New Jersey and has worked out a special discount only available here to our website visitors.

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Additional New Jersey DWI Resources

  • NJ DUI First Offense -  Detailed first offense information including punishments after a first offense DUI in New Jersey.

  • New Jersey SR22 Insurance -  Learn everything you need to know about New Jersey SR22 filing requirements with the DMV and find out how you can save hundreds of dollars each year on your NJ SR22 insurance.

  • New Jersey DUI Lawyers -   Contact one of our NJ DUI lawyers today.