What Are the Consequences for Underage DUIs in New Jersey?
It’s no secret that teenage rebellion occurs, and many under the legal drinking age consume alcohol. While this is dangerous, the risk drastically increases when these young adults get behind the wheel after partying. Unfortunately, many teenagers and young adults assume they are invincible, which is not the case. Those charged with underage DUIs in New Jersey must proceed carefully. The laws surrounding these occurrences are strict, so enlisting the help of a Bergen County, NJ DWI attorney to discuss your legal options if you’re facing this offense is critical.
What Constitutes Underage DUIs?
In New Jersey, the legal limit is to get behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking a Blood Alcohol Concentration of 0.08%. However, this only applies to adults over the age of 21. Additionally, someone can still face a DWI if their BAC is less than the legal limit but impacts their ability to operate a vehicle.
However, the law is much different for those under 21. If you are not at the legal drinking age, any amount of alcohol in your system when behind the wheel of a car warrants an underage DWI. Even those with a BAC of 0.01% can be charged because there is a detectable amount of alcohol, which is illegal for their consumption.
What Penalties Can I Face?
The penalties for an underage DUI can be severe, as they aim to deter repeat offenders. In most instances, an underage drunk driver will have their license suspended for thirty to ninety days and may be ordered to participate in a treatment program or community service.
However, it is essential to note that if you are underage and found with a BAC over 0.08% you will not be charged with an underage DWI. Instead, you will face the pull penalties of a DWI charge in New Jersey, which includes the potential for hefty fines, the installation of an ignition interlock device, and jail time.
How Can a Bergen County Attorney Help Me?
Being charged with a DUI, even if underage, is not something that should be taken lightly. A DUI cannot be expunged, as New Jersey does not consider it a criminal offense but a traffic violation. As such, this charge will follow you for the rest of your life. That’s why it’s in your best interest to enlist the assistance of an experienced attorney to help you fight the charges to prevent them from impacting your life.
At the Law Offices of Richard E. Novak, our dedicated legal team understands the complexities of these circumstances and the implications a DUI can have on your life. Our team is committed to exploring all possible defenses applicable for your case. Contact our firm today to discuss your situation.