Union County NJ Criminal Lawyers

First Offense

Linden NJ First Offense DWI/DUI Attorney

Although the penalties for a first offense are much less severe than those for a subsequent conviction, they are certainly stiff. Among the consequences is a mandatory drivers license suspension without any opportunity for a conditional or hardship license, as well as an annual NJDMV surcharge of $1,000 for three (3) years. A first offense also results in fines, increased insurance rates and other ramifications that will effect your daily life. It is obviously important to you secure experienced representation if you want to have the best opportunity of avoiding these penalties. Our firm, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, has exceptional credentials when it comes to defending DWI offenses, including multiple Alcotest certified and Field Sobriety certified, and former DUI prosecutors. We are prepared to thoroughly review the facts of your stop and arrest, and to formulate our plan to effectively defending your charge. An attorney on our staff is available 24/7 at 908-272-1700. Give our DWI defense firm a call.

What You Want To Know About A First Offense

Unlike repeat violations, the penalties for a first offense hinge on the blood alcohol level (“BAC”) that is placed into evidence in your case. If the BAC is .08 but less than .10%, then the penalties are less severe, including a 3 months mandatory license suspension. For cases where the breath test or blood test is .10% or higher, the penalties and period of drivers license suspension escalate with a 7-12 revocation. In those cases where there is no BAC reading because the evidence has been successfully suppressed (i.e. barred from use because of some defect), an outcome our attorneys achieve in first offense cases more times than not, the charge can only be proven using Field Sobriety Tests and, even when this is the case, the sentence is limited to first tier penalties (e.g. 3 months suspension).  Therefore, the initial hurdle in defending a first DWI offense is, assuming there is no issue concerning whether the stop or arrest was proper, is to suppress the BAC readings. This eliminates second tier penalties for someone with an original BAC of .10 or higher and provides them with significant opportunity for doing even better as the only remaining evidence of intoxication are the results of field sobriety testing. If the reading eliminated in a case were below .10%, the probability of an acquittal are significantly enhanced. This is why it is so important to retain an attorney who knows proper procedures for conducting breath and blood tests, preferably someone who is Alcotest certified, like the members of our firm. It also certainly helps if the firm has the benefit of its own Draeger 7110 Alcotest Breathalyzer to formulate and experiment with potential defenses. To our knowledge, we are the only law office in Union County with the benefit of its own breathalyzer.

Union Township DWI Defense Attorneys for a First Offense

Some of the busiest courts in Union County for DWI arrests are the City of Linden and Union Township. Since we are probably one of the largest, if not the largest, driving while intoxicated defense firm in NJ, we have frequent occasion to appear in Linden, Union and all of the other municipal courts in the county on first offenses. Accordingly, we not only know what how to successfully defend a first offense case, but the players in these municipalities. Call a member of our team for a free consultation at 908-272-1700.


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Contact Information

(908) 272-1700
By Appointment Only.
Call 24/7 for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.