License Loss and New Jersey’s New DWI/DUI Law


-First Offense With BAC .08 to less than .10:

Many first offenders can reduce or eliminate their time off of the road due to a DWI or DUI charge in New Jersey. The Statute speaks of license “forfeitures” rather than suspensions or revocations. Upon a finding of guilt to a first offense DWI/DUI the motorist will have their privilege to drive forfeited for an indefinite period of time until they install an ignition interlock device on the motor vehicle they own or operate.

With a BAC of .08 to less than .10 the ignition interlock device must remain in the motor vehicle for a period of three months.

-First Offense With a BAC .10-less than .15:

At this BAC level, upon a finding of guilt the motorist will have their privilege to drive forfeited for an indefinite period of time until they install an ignition interlock device on the motor vehicle they own or operate.

With a BAC of .10 to less than .15 the ignition interlock must remain in the motor vehicle for a period of seven to twelve months.

-First Offense With a BAC of .15 and Higher:

At this BAC level, upon a finding of guilt the motorist will have their privilege to drive forfeited for an indefinite period of time until they install an ignition interlock device on the motor vehicle they own or operate. At this level the motorist must be sentenced BOTH to the installation of an ignition interlock device AND a period of license suspension.

The ignition interlock is required to be placed on the motor vehicle in order to begin the suspension period which can range from four to six months. Thereafter, the motorist must keep the ignition interlock device on the motor vehicle upon restoration of their privileges for a period of nine to fifteen months thereafter.

-Second and Third Offenses:

Regardless of the BAC reading, a finding of guilt on a second offense DWI or DUI in New Jersey will result in a period of license suspension/revocation from one to two years. The ignition interlock device is required during the period of suspension and for two to four years thereafter.

Regardless of the BAC reading, a finding of guilty on a third offense DWI or DUI in New Jersey will result in a period of license suspension for eight years. The ignition interlock device is required during the period of suspension and for two to four years thereafter.

*This guide specifically addressed periods of license loss and ignition interlock device requirements. It should be noted that DWI and DUI in New Jersey comes with additional penalties beyond those addressed in this guide such as fines, surcharges, jail and, community service.

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