How to Restore Your Driving Privileges After a New Jersey DUI

_Driver’s License After a DUI

One of the biggest challenges after a DUI in New Jersey is waiting for clearance to get behind the wheel again. Losing your driving privileges can make it difficult to complete everyday tasks, like working, running errands, and picking up your kids from school. But once your suspension is over, you can take steps to restore your driver’s license and start driving without restrictions.

At the Law Office of Steven Ellman, we know how eager you are to regain your driving privileges after a DUI. A strong defense could help you beat the charges or reduce the penalty, avoiding lengthy driver’s license suspensions that limit your freedom. Contact us today for a free consultation with an experienced DUI lawyer in New Jersey.

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DUI Consequences for Your Driver’s License in New Jersey

New Jersey police and prosecutors don’t mess around regarding DUI cases, and the state’s DUI penalties prove it. Depending on the specifics of your case, your driving record, and other factors, the consequences of a DUI in New Jersey could include:

  • First offense with a BAC between 0.08 percent and 0.10 percent, or no specific BAC level 
    • Up to 30 days in jail
    • Driver’s license suspension until installation of ignition interlock device (IID) 
    • IID for three months
    • $250 to $400 fine
    • Minimum of two consecutive, six-hour days at an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC)
  • First offense with a BAC between 0.10 percent and 0.15 percent 
    • Up to 30 days in jail
    • License suspension until IID is installed, which must stay on for seven months to one year
    • $300 to $500 fine
    • Minimum of two consecutive six-hour days at an IDRC
    • Read More About:- First Offense 
  • Second offense 
    • Minimum of two and up to 90 days in jail
    • Driver’s license revocation for one to four years 
    • IID for the period of license suspension and up to four years after
    • $500 to $1,000 fine
    • Completing evaluation, referral, and individual programs from the IDRC
    • 30 days of community service
    • Read More About:- Second Offense 
  • Third offense
    • Up to 180 days in jail, which can be served in an IDRC treatment center
    • Driver’s license suspension for eight years
    • IID for revocation period for two to four years after driving privileges restored
    • $1,000 fine 
    • 30 days of community service
    • Read More About:- Third Offense

Drivers convicted of DUI in New Jersey also face auto insurance surcharges of up to $1,500, depending on the number of offenses they have. They could also face civil penalties if they caused a car accident that injured or killed someone else. 

Determining Your Eligibility for a Restored License

Unfortunately, the qualifications for a restored driver’s license in New Jersey are brutally simple: Only first-time DUI offenders have suspension periods that last until their ignition interlock device gets installed. 

Some states allow some drivers to obtain a restricted driver’s license following a DUI or drug-related traffic conviction. Restricted licenses allow offenders to drive under specific conditions. However, New Jersey does not extend this privilege. Everyone except first-time offenders must wait until their suspension ends, then take the steps to have an ignition interlock installed before they can regain their driving privileges.

The Application Process for a Restored License

Anyone convicted of DUI in New Jersey who wants their driver’s license restored must first have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle. This device measures the amount of alcohol in your system and prevents the car from starting if it reads above a certain level. The state keeps a list of qualified installers for these devices. You must use one of these companies.

Once you have the device installed, you can visit your local branch of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (NJMVC) to have them restore your driving privileges. The steps to have your license reinstated include:

  • Paying the $100 license restoration fee
  • Paying any fines, court fees, or other court-ordered assessments you owe in full, along with proof of payment
  • Proving you’ve had the ignition interlock installed in your car 
  • Completing any required community service or treatment programs at an IDRC.

Restoring your driving privileges after a DUI in New Jersey involves meticulous attention to detail. Here’s a list of the essential documents to bring to the NJMVC to show you’ve met the requirements for a restored license:

  • Court order The official mandate that specifies your ignition interlock device requirement, including its duration
  • Installation receipt Proof from the installer that you’ve had the ignition interlock device fitted to your vehicle
  • Monthly calibration reports – Regular updates showing you’ve maintained and used the device correctly
  • NJMVC notices – Any letters from the NJMVC related to your suspension or steps to regain your license
  • Proof of payment – Receipts or statements confirming you’ve settled any court-ordered fines and assessments
  • Compliance certificate – A document from the ignition interlock device provider verifying you’ve used the device as required
  • DUI treatment program proof (if applicable) – Certificates or evidence showing you’ve completed any mandatory DUI educational program.

Always remember, it’s better to be over-prepared. Staying organized and having all your documents in order can streamline the process, bringing you closer to reclaiming your driving freedom.

Common Mistakes and How a DUI Lawyer Can Help

Handling the aftermath of a DUI charge in New Jersey can be complex. Missteps and dead ends can delay or hinder your progress in restoring your driving privileges. Thankfully, a New Jersey DUI lawyer can help you avoid these potential pitfalls, such as:

  • Missing deadlines – A DUI attorney keeps track of all the essential dates in your case, ensuring you meet every deadline and attend crucial appointments.
  • Not fully comprehending the court’s orders Your attorney can break down every legal mandate in plain terms, ensuring you know what’s expected of you.
  • Incomplete documentation – A DUI lawyer can provide a detailed checklist of all necessary documents and help you procure each one.
  • Skipping DUI educational programs Your attorney can remind you how important these sessions are to the court and that they’re crucial for your restoration process.
  • Improperly using the ignition interlock device – An experienced DUI lawyer can guide you on the device’s correct usage, ensuring you avoid further sanctions.
  • Not knowing your rights A skilled attorney can educate you on your rights so that every step you take is informed and benefits your case.

Contact a New Jersey DUI Defense Attorney Now

New Jersey DUI defense lawyer Steven Ellman has more than 35 years of experience helping people charged with DUI/DWI and other traffic offenses in Northern, Central, and Southern New Jersey. Our law firm has the knowledge, drive, and insight to see your case through to a successful resolution. Call the Law Office of Steven Ellman today or reach out online for a free consultation.

 

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