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New Jersey DWI: steps to take after your arrest

A New Jersey DWI conviction may cause problems at home and work immediately upon sentencing. It can also follow you for several years, making many aspects of your life challenging.

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission states that license suspension is typically among the consequences of a DWI conviction. The exact sentence depends on your BAC and history. Taking action before the situation has a chance to escalate may help minimize the effect an arrest has on your life.

Talk with someone quickly after booking

You can begin building your defense by calling friends or family immediately after booking. The officers may claim your words slurred when you spoke, and your thought process seemed scattered. However, this may stem from their perspective, as they want a solid DWI case against you. If possible, talk to people who were with you shortly before your arrest. Find out how they perceived your speech and behavior.

Detail your food and drink intake

Make a list of the food and beverages you consumed in the hours before the arrest. Based on this information, toxicologists can often extrapolate your approximate blood alcohol content when officers stopped you. If you stopped at the store or restaurant, having the receipts for your purchases can corroborate your statement.

A broad range of situations can impact breath test readings. Medical and dental issues may inflate the results, making them erroneously high. Certain chemicals, such as paint, glue, adhesive, varnish and solvents, often linger for days and might skew the readings.

Losing your license, whether permanently or temporarily, can make getting your children to school, running errands and going to work more challenging. If a jury finds you guilty, you may have difficulty keeping a job, getting a loan and obtaining the apartment you want. Taking steps in your defense and understanding your options may minimize the consequences of an arrest and help avoid a conviction.