How Does A Driver’s Blood Alcohol Concentration Affect DUI Penalties In NJ?
Unfortunately, drunk driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents in the United States. Driving under the influence of alcohol leads to far too many car crashes and fatalities each year. Because of these statistics, it’s no surprise that New Jersey has some of the strictest DUI laws in the county. When discussing DUIs and the penalties you could face for them, it’s important to discuss how blood alcohol concentration (BAC) comes into play. If you aren’t sure what this means, no need to worry because our knowledgeable law firm has all the answers you’ll need! Continue reading this blog to learn more or reach out to a New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorney for individualized legal counseling.
WHAT IS BLOOD ALCOHOL CONCENTRATION?
A person’s blood alcohol concentration refers to the amount of alcohol present in their system. The number is usually a percentage between 0.00% and 0.20%. For example, a BAC of 0.10% means that a person’s blood supply has one part alcohol for every 1,000 parts blood. A driver’s blood alcohol concentration is most commonly detected using a breathalyzer test, a device that measures blood in your system when you breathe into it.
WHAT IS THE BAC LIMIT FOR NEW JERSEY DRIVERS?
According to New Jersey laws, a person can be found guilty of a DUI if they’re caught driving with a BAC of 0.08% or higher. However, you can still face charges even if you’re driving with a BAC lower than that. This is because you are considered “under the influence” if any amount of alcohol hinders your ability to drive safely.
WHAT PENALTIES CAN I FACE FOR A DUI IN NEW JERSEY?
The penalties you receive for a DUI offense depend on your BAC at the time you’re caught, your driving history, your criminal record, and the circumstances of the incident.
First-time offenders who had a BAC that was between 0.08% and 0.10% will face:
- Up to 30 days of jail time
- A license suspension until an interlock ignition device (IID) is installed in your car, then three months of required use of the IID
- A $400 fine plus a four-year $1,000 MVC surcharge
- At least 12 hours of time in an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center
It’s important to note the penalties increase the higher your BAC is. First-time offenders with a BAC that was between 0.10% and 0.15% are usually required to use an IID for 7-12 months. They might also be given higher fines than offenders with lower BACs.
Have you recently been charged with a DUI in New Jersey? You might want to speak with a trusted criminal defense attorney who can help you to determine your best options moving forward. Thankfully, our highly experienced legal team is on your side! Contact the Law Offices of Mark S. Guralnick today for an initial consultation.