Will I Have to Get an Ignition Interlock for a DWI Charge in New Jersey?

Information on what the Ignition Interlock Device Laws are in the Garden State of NJ

Trenton, Newark, Jersey City, Atlantic City, Hoboken, Princeton, and all other cities in the state of New Jersey have the same rules and regulations when it comes NJ Ignition Interlock laws for DWI, DUI, and drinking and driving charges. Those drivers who are pulled over with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more will be arrested and charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). Individuals who are subsequently convicted of DWI or DWI charges even for a 1st offense, will face a number of penalties including a driver’s license suspension, time in jail, monetary fines, and possibly having to use an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) in any car they drive. In order to potentially avoid having to get an Ignition Interlock installed for a DWI in New Jersey, as well as prevent a driver’s license from getting suspended, a driver should have their DWI or DUI arrest reviewed online by us as soon as possible in order to find what the best defense options are based upon what happened.

Ignition Interlock for a DWI Charge in New JerseyThe standard for being charged with drinking and driving in NJ and with DWI arrests across the country is generally having a BAC of 0.08 percent. This commonality is due to research that was performed to help understand the effects of alcohol on people’s ability to drive. Most drivers with a BAC of 0.05 percent were too impaired to drive, and all drivers with a BAC of 0.08 percent were too impaired to drive. Additionally, those under the age of 21 can be charged with DWI should their BAC be at or above 0.02 percent, and commercial vehicle drivers can also be charged with a blood alcohol content level of 0.04 percent or more.

What Are the Penalties for Driving Under the Influence & DWI in New Jersey?

Individuals convicted of a DWI offense charge in this NJ will face a number of different penalties, which will include having to install an Ignition Interlock device. These DWI an Interlock penalties are meant to discourage offenders from repeating their drinking and driving behavior, helping to keep them and others on the road safe. For those convicted of a first time DWI and DUI offense in New Jersey, or those with no previous drinking and driving offenses, they will face the following penalties:

  • Jail Sentence of Up to 30 Days
  • Fines Between $250 and $500
  • NJ Driver’s License Suspension of Three Months to One Year
  • Possible Ignition Interlock Device Installation Requirement

2nd DWI & DUI offense drivers are those individuals with previous DWI related convictions on their past criminal record, and the state of New Jersey has a look-back period of 10 years. Those offenders with one previous DWI offense in the last 10 years are second time offenders and receive the following penalties:

  • Jail Sentence of Up to 90 Days
  • Fines Between $500 and $1,000
  • Driver’s License Suspension of Two Years
  • Needing to Install an Ignition Interlock Device on any Car Driven by a NJ DWI Offender

Third-time offenders with two previous DWI offenses in the last 10 years are third time offenders and receive the following penalties:

  • Jail Sentence of Up to 180 Days
  • Fines of $1,000
  • New Jersey DWI Driver’s License Suspension Period of 10 Years
  • Having to Get a DWI Interlock Device Installed on Every Vehicle a Person Will be Driving (Includes Work Vehicles)

Besides the costs of the Ignition Interlock installation requirement, there are also some other DWI penalties individuals face simply for being arrested for a drinking and driving related crime in NJ. Some of these additional penalties include:

  • $100 State and Municipality Fee
  • $100 Violent Crimes Compensation Fee
  • $100 for the Drunk Driving Enforcement Fund
  • $100 Motor Vehicle Restoration Fee
  • $100 Intoxicated Driver Program Fee

What is an Ignition Interlock Device, and How Does It Work With DWI Laws in New Jersey?

An Ignition Interlock in NJ is a device that works very similarly to the Breathalyzer test used by law enforcement officers. This device is installed in DWI and DUI offenders’ cars and likely any other vehicle registered in their name. An IID is meant to deter individuals from partaking in drinking and driving, and this is accomplished by requiring offenders to provide a breath sample before they can start their vehicle. The DWI Interlock is calibrated with a pre-determined BAC threshold, which is generally set at 0.02 percent in the state of New Jersey.

When the breath sample given is below this pre-determined threshold, the vehicle starts as normal, but when the breath sample is above the pre-determined threshold, the Interlock prevents the vehicle from starting. Additionally, some devices are set to require random breath samples after the car has already been started. If this retested sample is above the pre-determined threshold, the event is logged in the device’s memory storage, and while the car does not stop, when this happens an alarm sounds until the vehicle has been parked and the engine turned off.

When is Using an Ignition Interlock Device Required for a DWI Offense in the State of NJ?

The state of New Jersey has authorized the use of an Ignition Interlock device for specific drivers who have been convicted of DWI, DUI, or other drinking and driving related crimes. Courts can authorize the installation and maintenance of an Interlock as a condition of having an offender’s driving privileges reinstated. Some of the circumstances in which an Ignition Interlock device may be required include, but are not limited to, the following 2 scenarios:

  1. First time NJ DWI & DUI offenders whose blood alcohol content is greater than 0.15 percent
  2. Convicted repeat or 2nd DWI offense drivers, or those found guilty of other drinking and driving related charges

Who is Responsible for Paying for all the Costs of the New Jersey Ignition Interlock Device?

In most DWI and other drinking and driving cases that order the use of Interlock device, New Jersey offenders using the IID are responsible for paying for its installation and maintenance costs. Offenders should be prepared to pay anywhere up to $100 or more to have the device installed in their vehicle as well as between $70 and $120 a month to lease the device from an Ignition Interlock provider. It is important to know these costs are just rough estimates, and prices vary based on the provider and his or her specific conditions.

What is the Process of Getting an Ignition Interlock Device in New Jersey Installed on My Car?

After NJ DWI offenders have been convicted or plead guilty, and in some cases served a portion of their driver’s license suspension, it is possible for the court to authorize them to get an Ignition Interlock device installed in order to regain their driving privileges. Once this has occurred, individuals have a window of time in which they need to lease the Interlock and have it installed in their car. DWI drivers will need to lease the IID from a state approved provider – these Ignition Interlock device providers can be found across the state, and a full list can be found on the NJ Motor Vehicle Commission website.

Once the DWI Interlock device has been leased from a state of New Jersey approved provider, it needs to be professionally installed in the offender’s vehicle in order to properly comply with the state laws. It is important to make sure the device is installed and working properly so individuals remain within the guidelines set forth by the court. Once this entire process has been completed, it is not uncommon for offenders to have to report back on their status to either the judge, the court, their probation officer, or the MVC. Most often, convicted DWI and DUI drivers in NJ will need to provide a copy of the IID lease agreement as well one of the receipt they received once the device was installed in their vehicle. Once a New Jersey Ignition Interlock lawyer reviews a person’s own arrest information online with us as to what took place, they can then be able let a driver know of any possible ways and defense options for how to avoid having to get and install an Ignition Interlock device in:

[column col=”1/4″]Atlantic County
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[/column]

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[/column]

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