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Arrested for a DUI Offense?
Let an experienced NJ DUI/DWI attorney help you navigate this complex world.

DWI & DUI Lawyer in Northern New Jersey

Getting convicted for drunk driving or drugged driving in New Jersey is costly. We’re not just talking about the hefty fines. A conviction for driving under the influence can lead to jail time, mandatory license suspension, increased insurance rates, and numerous other potential legal and financial burdens.

If you’ve been arrested for a DUI violation within Bergen County or Northern New Jersey, Hackensack criminal lawyer Alan Peyrouton can help you. He will take the time to listen carefully to the details of my client’s cases and straightforwardly explain your options. 

You can trust top-rated DUI defense attorney Alan Peyrouton to fight for your rights and provide personalized attention to help minimize the consequences of your DUI offense.

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Understanding New Jersey DUI Laws

For many, a first-time DUI arrest is their first intimate contact with the criminal justice and legal system. It’s never a pleasant experience, and the laws, penalties, and terminology can be complex and confusing.

At Peyrouton Law, we believe in educating the public as we do with our legal clients. The more you know about NJSA 39:4-50 — the New Jersey drunk driving statute — the better equipped you’ll be to make decisions that are in your best interests.

What's the difference between DUI and DWI charges?

In New Jersey, DUI (driving under the influence) and DWI (driving while intoxicated) are the same. The terms are interchangeable and refer to operating a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. As such, we will go back and forth between DUI and DWI throughout this page.

Consequences of DUI Convictions in New Jersey

Depending on factors such as your prior record and the severity of the offense, a DUI conviction in New Jersey can carry serious consequences. These include:

What is the legal limit for DUI in New Jersey?

The legal limit for DUI in New Jersey is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08%. So if you have a BAC of 0.08% or higher, you are considered to be legally impaired and can be charged with DUI. However, even if your BAC is below 0.08%, you can still be charged with DUI if the police officer believes that your driving ability has been impaired by alcohol or drugs.

Penalties for a First-Offense DUI Conviction

In New Jersey, it is illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs or to allow someone else to drive your vehicle if they’re under the influence.

The penalties for first-time drunk driving conviction include the following:

If a driver's blood alcohol concentration is 0.08% or higher but less than 0.10%:

If a driver's blood alcohol concentration is 0.10% or higher:

What happens if I'm convicted of operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs?

In New Jersey, violations first-offense violations for driving under the influence of drugs are treated the same as those for DWI (driving while intoxicated). But in addition to the DUI charges, you will likely be charged with drug possession and distribution.

Penalties for a Second-Offense DUI Conviction

The penalties become much more severe if you are convicted of a second DUI. The penalties for a second-time conviction include the following:

Penalties for a Third-Offense DUI Conviction

The penalties become even more severe if you are convicted of a third DUI offense. The penalties for a third-time conviction include the following:
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Picture of Attorney Alan G. Peyrouton
Attorney Alan G. Peyrouton
Alan Peyrouton is a top-rated criminal defense lawyer based in Hackensack, New Jersey. The founding partner of Peyrouton Law, he defends clients accused of crimes in Bergen County and throughout Northern New Jersey. Whether handling the most complicated or routine cases — Mr. Peyrouton consistently receives five-star reviews from satisfied clients, reflecting his unwavering dedication to his profession.

What a New Jersey DUI Lawyer Can Do for You

Navigating the New Jersey court system can be complex and overwhelming, and that’s where an experienced DWI defense attorney like Alan Peyrouton can help.

When you meet Alan Peyrouton during your free initial consultation, he will listen attentively to your side of the story. This conversation is a critical first step in understanding your legal options and crafting a strong DUI defense strategy to fit the facts of your case.

When you hire Alan Peyrouton to handle your drunk driving case — you will get:

The sooner you hire an experienced legal representation, the better your chances of a successful outcome for your criminal drug case. Contact our law office at (201) 686-9538 or Alan@peyroutonlaw.com to schedule your free consultation today.

The DWI Investigation & Arrest Process

When police suspect a driver of either driving while intoxicated or under the influence, they must follow specific procedures to make an arrest. Let’s take a look at the DUI arrest process.

Initial Stop

For the traffic stop that led to the DWI charges to be valid, it must comply with the rules set by the New Jersey Supreme Court ruling, State v. Carpentieri. Under that ruling, police must have justifiable “reasonable suspicion” to believe that a violation of the traffic laws has occurred to make a stop for DWI.

During the initial stop phase, an officer may approach your motor vehicle, request documentation, and ask questions. The officer will then try to gather probable cause for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. If signs of impairment are visible, such as slurred speech or the odor of alcohol, they can become the basis for making a DWI arrest.

Field Sobriety Tests

If the officer believes a driver is intoxicated, they will ask them to step out of their vehicle and take field sobriety tests. These field sobriety tests, which should match the federal field sobriety test standards approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), include the following:

Remember that doing well on field sobriety tests won’t necessarily stop you from being arrested for DWI. But it can help to provide a defense in court by showing that you weren’t impaired.

What Happens if I Refuse To Take a Breath Test in New Jersey?

Any New Jersey driver who refuses to take a breath test is breaking the law. Under the state’s “implied consent” law, you have already given your consent to a breath test if suspected of driving while intoxicated. 

If a police officer has reasonable grounds to believe that you are driving while intoxicated and you refuse to take a breath test — you can still be convicted of the DWI refusal charge.

In short, if you refuse to take a breath or a field sobriety test while in New Jersey, you may face penalties similar to someone convicted of a DUI or DWI.

Arrests

If the police officer determines that there is enough evidence to arrest the driver for suspicion of DWI, they will take the following steps:

Know Your Rights: 4 Tips for Dealing with Police Office During DUI Stops

If you’ve been recently charged with a DUI in New Jersey — or want to avoid a first DUI charge — knowing how to deal with police officers is critical legal knowledge here.

Even routine traffic stops can be intensely stressful experiences, but knowing your rights and flexing your rights can help you minimize the risk of a DUI charge. Here are four tips that have helped my clients over the years:

The DUI Court Process

If you’ve been arrested for drunk driving in New Jersey, you must appear in municipal court to face the charges against you. This process includes an arraignment and a trial.

Arraignment

The arrangement is your first appearance in municipal court, where the judge will explain the charge, potential penalties, and your legal rights. You will also enter a plea and decide whether you want to hire an attorney. The judge will then schedule another court date.

During subsequent court dates, you or your lawyer will negotiate with the municipal court judge and prosecutor to resolve the case. However, New Jersey does not allow plea bargains for DUI charges. So if your case cannot be resolved through negotiation, it will go to trial.

Negotiations and Trial

A knowledgeable DWI lawyer will negotiate with the prosecutor to reduce the charges or to obtain a lesser sentence. But an aggressive and skilled DUI attorney will know how to defend you at trial when negotiations are unsuccessful.

During a trial, the prosecutor will attempt to prove that you are guilty of DUI. If found guilty, the judge will sentence you, which may include losing your license, paying fines, and facing other penalties. In limited circumstances, your lawyer may be able to have criminal defense lawyers get your DUI case dismissed.

Remember: In New Jersey, a DWI charge cannot be plea bargained, downgraded, or amended. The municipal judge will find you guilty or not guilty of the driving while intoxicated charge. And if you’re found not guilty, your charge will be dismissed.

3 Effective DUI Defense Strategies to Fight Drunk Driving Charges

An effective DUI defense strategy can help you avoid or reduce the penalties you may face. Here are three key DUI defense strategies that have helped Peyrouton Law clients avoid or reduce penalties for drunk driving offenses:

Strategy #1: Challenging the constitutional basis of the motor vehicle stop or arrest

If the police illegally stopped, arrested, and searched your vehicle — any evidence they collect may be inadmissible in court.

Client Success Story

A DWI case we won involved a client who had gone to his car to escape a bad domestic situation. He was drinking wine when the police approached him. The police arrested and charged our client with a DWI. It was clear to the municipal judge that our client had no intent to drive his vehicle.

Strategy #2: Questioning the scientific accuracy of the breathalyzer or blood test results

Breathalyzers and blood tests can give inaccurate readings. If your attorney can show that the results are unreliable, you may be able to avoid conviction.

Client Success Story

Our Newark client got charged with a DWI after police administered a breathalyzer test. After my team reviewed the evidence, we discovered that the police did not properly calibrate the Alcotest machine. We then convinced the court to throw out the blood alcohol content (BAC) reading. As a result, our client received a three-month license suspension rather than a seven-month suspension.

Strategy #3: Identifying procedural violations with evidence collection or arrest

Police officers often fail to follow proper protocol when arresting someone for a DUI. A skilled New Jersey DUI lawyer attorney will examine every aspect of the arresting officers’ actions to determine if they followed the law correctly. If the police made any errors, your attorney could argue for a reduced sentence or dismissal of your charges.

Client Success Story

We had a Paterson case where our client was in an accident. He was transported to the hospital and had his blood drawn. We identified errors in the manner in which the police obtained the evidence. As a result, we got his DWI charges dismissed. At Peyrouton Law, we're experienced and knowledgeable New Jersey DWI lawyers. We'll review all the evidence, determine if you have any defenses against the charge, and work to achieve the best outcome possible for your case.

How Do I Find the Best DUI Lawyer in New Jersey for My Case?

The best DUI lawyer for you will be an experienced attorney with a proven track record of success in DWI cases. At the Peyrouton Law firm, we are passionate about defending our clients who face DWI charges and protecting their rights within the criminal justice system.

Questions to Ask Prospective New Jersey DUI Lawyers

For peace of mind, you must be confident that you’ve hired the right criminal defense lawyer. During consultations with prospective defense attorneys, here are a few questions you might want to ask them:

That last question is crucial because a large law firm might have multiple criminal defense attorneys. So be sure to ask if the lawyer you meet during your free consultation is the one who gets assigned to your case.

Lastly, when evaluating prospective DUI attorneys, remember that you are hiring them to defend you. If you don’t feel comfortable with this person, move on!

Call to Speak with an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you’ve been charged with a DUI or DWI in New Jersey, contact the Peyrouton Law offices for a free consultation. You will meet Alan Peyrouton, an experienced and skilled DUI attorney with more than 12 years of experience in the Bergen County court system.

Call (201) 686-9538 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.

Peyrouton Law will aggressively defend you against all criminal allegations and work to get the best possible outcome for your criminal case.
Alan with client

FAQs about DUI and DWI Charges in NJ

New Jersey law does not require you to hire a DUI lawyer for a first-time offense, but it’s strongly recommended. DUI cases can be complicated, and a good lawyer can help reduce the charges and penalties. Hiring a lawyer may also be cheaper than a DUI conviction’s fines and other costs. So, it’s worth considering.

If your DWI involves an accident with serious physical injury or death, you may be charged with a serious felony. In addition, if you’re charged with driving under a suspended license for a DWI offense, you may face an 18-month prison sentence.

The cost of hiring a DUI lawyer in New Jersey varies depending on the law firm and the complexity of your case. Most lawyers offer free consultations, so you can ask what their fees will be. Before hiring an attorney, ask about payment options and any additional costs associated with the case.

Most defense attorneys will answer this question with a decisive “no.” But here’s another way to look at it. If you want to increase your odds of being found guilty and receiving the harshest possible penalties in your DUI case, then representing yourself is a good idea. However, if you want the best chance of obtaining a dismissal or  reduced charges — you should hire an experienced criminal lawyer.

In NJ, a DWI is not a criminal offense, and a DWI conviction will not result in a criminal record. However, a DWI conviction will appear on your driving record forever.

The state also has an early intervention program for individuals at risk of developing a substance use disorder, which aims to prevent drug-related crimes and reduce recidivism.

In all likelihood, a DWI will not appear on a criminal background check. An employer may run an exhaustive background check that includes driving records, in which case a DUI conviction may appear.

If you have been convicted of a DWI while operating your private motor vehicle, you may face a one-year license suspension because of your CDL. But accumulating two DWI convictions will result in a permanent CDL suspension.

No, a New Jersey DUI conviction cannot be expunged from a driving record since it is considered a traffic offense, not a criminal offense. Expungements are only available for criminal offenses.

However, removing a DUI conviction from your driving record after ten years through Post Conviction Relief is possible.

The police in New Jersey uses a twelve-step evaluation called the Drug Recognition Evaluation (DRE) to identify motorists driving under the influence of drugs. 

If police suspect someone is driving under the influence of drugs, they will typically administer a blood or urine test. If you’re currently facing drug DUI charges in New Jersey, it’s crucial to seek the help of an experienced drug crime attorney who can guide you through the legal process and provide you with the necessary support.

What Our Clients Say About Our Law Firm

Peyrouton Law
4.9
Based on 276 reviews
Alysa Melero
Alysa Melero
1718736824
Makes a great confidant argument,and is such a comfort to have on our side!
Haitian Bokor Leonard Elmera
Haitian Bokor Leonard Elmera
1718408623
This guy deserves 10 stars he works and is assertive. He is a heavy weight champ in the court room BEST LAWYER EVER he worked on my girlfriend’s case and got a her a victory. He is very meticulous and orderly in his defense. This guy is outstanding. 🥊 BEST LAWYER EVER !
MetalBabe87 Metal High Priestess
MetalBabe87 Metal High Priestess
1718401673
I hired Al, for a Domestic Violence Situation. In the court system. He was beyond helpful. Very open and receptive. Communication was absolute key with him. He kept me in the know every email every text message. Communication was on point!He was and is very passionate. Leads with integrity boldness and truth. I have never seen so much tenacity in person. He was beyond helpful - explaining situations in the court system that I should expect.I highly recommend him. I will recommend him to any of my clients as well. He is absolutely excellent and straightforward. Definitely pushes the envelope and applies the pressure as a true lawyer should.Once again, I will absolutely recommend him for any cases in the future. An absolutely recommend him to friends and family. I hope to work with him again under better circumstances.Thank you so much - for your patience, guidance and help. You have been absolutely wonderful to work with.
Yvette Bariffe
Yvette Bariffe
1718395085
Navigating the criminal justice system can be a daunting and intimidating experience. However, Peyrouton Law demonstrates an exceptional ability to guide clients through this complex world with the utmost professionalism. The firm embodies a comprehensive combination of knowledge, experience, tenacity, and effective representation. When my 22-year-old son, who resides in Chicago but works in New Jersey, inadvertently neglected to place his legally registered firearm in his checked luggage, he found himself facing arrest. As a mother residing in Chicago, I was overwhelmed with fear and uncertainty, being unfamiliar with New Jersey's criminal justice system. Upon reaching out to Peyrouton Law, they diligently represented my son throughout his legal challenge, alleviating my anxiety and providing much-needed reassurance. I wholeheartedly endorse and recommend this exceptional law firm.
Anji Gomez
Anji Gomez
1718143485
El mejor abogado que pude aver encontrado cada audiencia me sentí confiada porque sabía que todo iba salir bien no ablo inglés y también mejor abogado en abla español súper bueno de confianza y pudo quitarme los cargos de los cuales estaba acusada lo recomiendo
jessica janicek
jessica janicek
1718121038
Jesus Temple
Jesus Temple
1717651101
I am very pleased with the choice I made, when I choose Peyrouton Law Firm. Allan is such a great person and listens to you carefully and applied pressure to your case.
Adrian Williams
Adrian Williams
1717650815
Allan has the best criminal attorney in New Jersey, he's a man of his word. If you in need of a criminal attorney search no more, here's one right here Peyrouton Law Firm.......
Bruce Mandell
Bruce Mandell
1717650349
Best lawyer there is hands down💙❤️💙
God is love
God is love
1717519337
Alan is a great experience good attorney hard working man 👨 looking for a good criminal lawyer Alan is the boss ❤️
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NJ criminal  defense lawyer Alan Peyrouton discusses everything you need to know about your legal rights and the law.

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