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NJ Lawmakers Consider Ignition Interlock Devices for All DUI Offenses

July 30, 2012 | Posted In Criminal Law - DUI/DWI

New Jersey DUI Lawyers Report on New Proposal

New Jersey lawmakers are considering a proposal that would require everyone convicted of a DUI offense, even first-time offenders, to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicles. 

Currently, the state requires mandatory installation of ignition interlock devices on vehicles of repeat DUI offenders.  Offenders whose blood-alcohol readings were extremely high are also included in this rule.  However, if the new proposal is adopted, every person who is convicted of DUI will be required to install this device in all of their vehicles. 

The bill is being co-sponsored by Senator Nicholas Scutari Democrat-Union.  Under the proposal, a person who has been convicted of a DUI offense must pay for the installation of the ignition interlock device.  The device can be leased at a cost of $3 a day from a private company.  If an offender accumulates three DUI convictions, then he will be required to have the ignition interlock device installed for life.

The proposed rule would lower the fines that are typically levied on motorists who are convicted of DWI offense.  There would also be a reduction in the license suspension period to a maximum of 60 days.  However, these provisions are still being considered by lawmakers. 

Several states have successfully experimented with ignition interlock devices, and other states that do not have such programs in place are currently implementing pilot programs.  For example, California introduced a program in four of its counties that requires mandatory interlock devices on vehicles of all offenders.   If the program is successful, then the state plans to expand the program across California. Currently, 16 states have ignition interlock device laws in place. 

The New Jersey DUI lawyers at Helmer Paul Conley and Kasselman represent persons charged with DUI across New Jersey.

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