NJ Driving While Suspended Defense Attorney

     New Jersey has harsh penalties for those caught driving with a suspended license.  Depending upon what your license is suspended for, tthere may be vasty different penalties.  Most of the penalties will involve adding an additional 6 month’s of license suspension to the current sentence.  This means that if you had 3 months left in your suspension, you will now have to wait 9 months to restore.

If you have been ticketed for driving with a suspended license, call the Experienced License Suspension Defense Attorneys of Avery & Avery today.


What are the Penalties?

The applicable penalties depend upon what you were originally suspended for, and for how many times you have been convicted for driving with a suspended license.  If you were suspended for a conviction of Drunk Driving, the penalties are increased. In addition to the below, you would also be subject to a minimum 10 days and possible 90 days in jail.  Your license would also be suspended for an additional 1-2 years, and you would pay an additonal $500 fine.

1st Offense:

  • $500 Fine + Assessments
  • Up to an Additional 6 Month Driver’s License Suspension

2nd Offense:

  • $750 Fine + Assessments
  • Up to an Additional 6 Month Driver’s License Suspension
  • 1-5 Days in Jail

3rd Offense:

  • $1000 Fine + Assessments
  • Up to an additional 6 month Driver’s License Suspension
  • 10 Days in Jail

1st Offense if Suspension is from conviction for Drunk Driving / Impaired Driving:

  • $500 Fine + Assessments
  • 1-2 Year's (12-24 Month) Additional Driver’s License Suspension
  • Minimum 10 to 90 Days in Jail**

**If your license suspension is for DUI, and you were caught driving while suspended in a school zone, in addition to the above, you will be charged: $500, have your license suspended for an additional 1-2 years, and recieve a jail sentence from 60-90 days.  If this is a second offense, the jail sentence will be 120-150 days.  If this is a third offense, the jail sentence will be for 150-180 days. 


What can I be Suspended For?

Licenses may be suspended for a variety of reasons including:

  • Conviction for D.U.I.
  • Accumulating too many DMV Points
  • Failure to Pay Tickets (including parking)
  • Conviction for Certain Drug Offenses
  • Conviction for Possession of Alcohol by Underaged Person
  • Conviction for Grave Violation’s of the Motor Vehicle Code
  • Failure to Pay Child Support
  • Any offense, based on the Judges discretion.  This most often happens with Speeding cases, where the defendant is traveling too fast for the Judges liking.


How can a Lawyer Help?

There are many things an experienced traffic defense attorney can do to help with NJ suspended license tickets.  Our first goal is to completely defeat the charges and find any defenses.  These might include very technical defenses There wasn’t a reason to pull you over in the first place.  Every case is unique, and hundreds of possible defenses may arise.  

Other times it is best to negotiate a deal with the prosecutor.  An experienced defense attorney stands a far better chance of coming away with a beneficial arrangement than a regular citizen.  The benefits of this may include, no or diminished points, reduced fines, and even saving a defendent’s license when it would otherwise be suspended.

For a free consultation, please see our contact page, or call a NJ Traffic Defense Attorney today at 201-943-2445.


Frequently Asked Questions:

I don’t understand, what are the penalties for a 1st time driving while suspended, where I was suspended for a NJ DUI?

If you have been suspended pursuant to a DUI / DWI conviction, the penalties are stiff. You will face a minimum of $1,000 in fines, 10-days in jail, and 18-months license suspension (on top of the current suspension).  If the charge is also in a school zone, you would face a minimum of $1,500 in fines, 70 days in jail, and 18-months drivers license suspension.  Because these charges have such strict penalties, it is imperative to defend yourself with an experienced NJ suspended license defense lawyer.  

A lawyer can often reduce or eliminate jail time, and license suspensions.  Call today for a free consultation.

I have a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License), how do NJ suspended driving tickets affect me?

As a CDL driver, it is important to note that even certain driving offenses committed while driving your personal vehicle, can affect your commercial driver’s license; this is especially so with Drug and DUI / DWI charges.  

For a fuller listing of penalties related to certain NJ traffic offenses for CDL drivers, see here.

In addition to the above punishments, your employer or insurance carrier may have their own issues if you are convicted for a driving while suspended charge, especially if you were orginally suspended for something serious.  Don’t lose your livilihood, if you are a CDL driver and have been given a speeding ticket in NJ, contact our Criminal Defense Attorney’s today.

Im suspended due to child support issues, what do I do?

NJ Courts have the authority to suspend your driver’s license in the event that you are found delinquent on your child support payments.  The only way around this is directly through the Family Part of the Superior Courts, rather than at the Municipality where you were charged for driving while suspended.  Often times we are able to work out a deal with the Court so that you may restore your license in exchange for collateral that child support will be paid.

My driver’s license was suspended for charges in NJ, what do I do?

A NJ Driver’s license may be suspended for a variety of charges and reasons.  The most common include:

While this is not an exhaustive list, the remedies are usually limited.  It’s important to defend yourself against all charges, and to appear in Court.  Even if you have already been convicted of certain driving offenses, including drunk driving, you have the right to appeal, or reopen the case in certain circumstances.  

If you have accrued too many points, it is possible to re-open certain cases, or to have your point count reduced, negating the reason for the suspension.  This arrangement must often be worked out with the DMV, and requires finesse.  An Experienced NJ Traffic Lawyer can be invaluable in these cases.

If you have failed to appear for Court appearances, your license will be suspended indefinitely, until you report to the Court.  

In most cases, you will eventually have to pay the DMV to have your driving privileges restored.  You may do this, here.  Once paid, you should generally wait to recieve a restoration letter, and you should call the DMV to confirm that your license has been restored.

If you have already been convicted of the charges which led to your suspension, it is possible, in some instances, to reopen your case and attempt to either have the case dismissed or arrange a better plea which would not get you suspended.

How does the New Jersey motor vehicle point system work?

DMV Motor Vehicle Points are different from Insurance Company Motor Vehicle Points.  Every insurance company has an individual system of points they use to calculate your rates.  For instance, a conviction for Drunk Driving in New Jersey, carries no DMV points, but can have nearly 10 points for insurance purposes, significantly boosting your premium.

For this reason, it’s very important to defend against traffic summonses rather than pleading guilty and removing the points through the programs described below.

For a variety of NJ traffic tickets, DMV Motor Vehicle Points will attach to your license.   For a list of all NJ Traffic Violations which summonses carry motor vehicle points, click here.  You will have to pay surcharges to the DMV if you acquire 6 or more points within a 3-year period.  If you acquire more than 12, you are also subject to an administrative suspension.  This happens even when a Judge doesn’t order it at Court.  For almost any point violation, your insurance company will likely raise your rates.  

For every year you have no points assessed against your license, you will have 3-points subtracted from your record.  

My driver’s license was suspended because I got too many points, now what?

If you accrue too many points in a short period of time, the NJ DMV will typically suspend your license for a period of time.  If you receive:

  • 12-15 points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for 30 days;
  • 16-18 points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for 60 days;
  • 19-21 points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for 90 days;
  • 22-24 points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for 120 days;
  • 25-27 points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for 150 days;
  • 28+ points in 2 years or less, you will typically be suspended for at LEAST 180 days.

There are slightly reduced penalties if you merely accumulate so many points, rather than having them in a short period of time, as above.  If at any time you accrue:

  • 12-18 points, you will typically be suspended for 30 days;
  • 19-22 points, you will typically be suspended for 60 days;
  • 23-26 points, you will typically be suspended for 90 days;
  • 27-30 points, you will typically be suspended for 120 days;
  • 31-35 points, you will typically be suspended for 150 days;
  • 36 points, you will typically be suspended for at LEAST 180 days.

These numbers are not definitive, they represent typical suspension periods.  You will often be afforded an opportunity to attend an administrative hearing where you can explain the circumstances.  In some cases our traffic attorney’s can negotiate a reduced suspension, however it is always best to fight the charges in Court when you first recieve a summons.

How do NJ DMV surcharges work?

There are a few reasons you can be forced to pay New Jersey’s Division of Motor Vehicle’s a surchage.   The most common way is if you accrue 6 or more points within a 3 year period of your last points.  You will be charged $25 for each point, for three years.  This means that if you are convicted for 8-points of violations, you will pay $200 a year for 3-years.  There are specific other violations which have their own mandatory surcharges, these are:

  • Drunk Driving, DUI / DWI convictions.  A first and second offense carries a surcharge of $1,000 a year, for 3-years.  This includes convictions for refusal cases.  The surcharge can go up higher for 3rd offenses.
  • Being Unlicensed or having an Expired License will also cost you $100 a year for 3-years.
  • Driving with a Suspended License will cost you $250 a year, for 3-years.
  • Not insuring your vehicle will cost $250 a year, for 3-years.

If you do not pay these surcharges, your license will be suspended, or your eligibility to restore your license will be delayed.  These costs are in addition to those assessed in Court.  You can pay the surcharges online, by mail, by phone, or in person at your local DMV location.  Often, the surcharges and court costs alone will be more than hiring an experienced traffic defense attorney.

How do I find out how many points I have on my license?

Often, people forget their drivers history, and won’t recall this.  In these cases, we often ask our clients to obtain whats called a Driver’s Abstract.  A driver’s abstract is a form from the, New Jersey Department of Motor Vehicle’s, detailing the history of various driving infractions a person has recieved, and the disposition of those charges.  A copy of the abstract can be ordered here.  It is advisable to order the Certified Abstract, rather than the typical 5-year abstract.  This will list a greater range of history, and be more readily usable in Court.

Is there any other way to reduce my points?

Aside from good lawyering in Court, after you have already received a NJ traffic summons, there are two other avenues you can use as provided by the law contained in N.J.S.A. 39:5-30.9.

You may complete a Defensive Driving Program, once every 5 years, and have 2 points subrtracted from your record.  These only work if you already have points on your license, you cannot get negative points.  You may, however, be eligible for certain insurance rate reductions after completing a course.  This will depend upon your insurance carrier.  Many of these programs can be completed online.  They can take anywhere from 1-5 hours to complete.  There are many state approved courses which will grant you the 2-point reduction.

You may also complete a Driver Improvement Program once every two years, which can subtract 3-points from your license.  

How much will my insurance go up?

The answer to this depends upon what insurance carrier you have, your driving record, how many points you recieve, how fast you were going, and what type of neighborhood it was in.  It is not uncommon for insurance premiums to jump by thousands of dollars a year.  As such, it is important to defend yourself from even minor traffic violations.  

How much will the DMV surcharges be?

If you accumulate more than 6 points in a 3-year period, the DMV will apply a surcharge.  The amount charged will be $25 per point, per year, for 3 years.  If you already have 4 points from an offense 2 years ago, and are convicted of a NJ 4 point speeding ticket now, you will have to pay $200 a year for three years in surcharges.  

There are other offenses which carry their own separate surcharges, as discussed above.  If you have a DUI / DWI conviction for instance, there will be at least a $1,000 surcharge per year for three years.  In addition to this, although there are no points assessed for a NJ drunk driving conviction, your insurance company would dramatically increase your rate.  

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