Hudson County DUI Attorney
Police and prosecutors take DUI arrests and charges seriously in Hudson County. If you are accused of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the consequences could be severe. Depending on your prior driving history, you could lose your driver’s license, have to pay heavy fines, and possibly be sent to jail for several months or longer.
At William Proetta Criminal Law, our Hudson County DUI attorneys have handled thousands of criminal cases throughout our careers. With his background as a Standardized Field Sobriety Testing Instructor, founding attorney William Proetta has a thorough understanding of how sobriety tests are administered and how the machines involved work. He has earned a reputation for crafting savvy and successful defenses against DUI and DWI charges.
To learn how our Hudson County DUI defense law firm can help you, contact us today for a free initial consultation.
Our Attorneys Take on All Types of DUI and DWI Cases in Hudson County
Our law firm has extensive experience helping people in Hudson County, N.J., with many types of DUI offenses, including:
- First DUI – A first-time DUI in New Jersey is usually classified as a disorderly persons offense, which is the equivalent of a misdemeanor in other states. The penalties for a first-time DUI depend on your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level at the time of the alleged offense, among other factors. At a minimum, you’ll be looking at a fine of $250 or more, up to 30 days in jail, and having to spend two six-hour days at an Intoxicated Driver Resource Center (IDRC).
- Second DUI – A second DUI offense within 10 years is still classified as a disorderly persons offense, though you will face much harsher penalties. These penalties include a fine of $500 or more, up to 90 days in jail (with a minimum of two days required), suspension of your driver’s license for one to two years, having an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle for at least one year after your license is restored, and having to spend up to 48 hours at an IDRC.
- Third DUI – A third DUI within 10 years of a second offense substantially increases the potential penalties you could face. These penalties include a fine of $1,000 or more, up to 180 days in jail, having an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle, a mandatory 10-year suspension of your driver’s license, and up to 48 hours in an IDRC.
Why You Need a Hudson County Defense Lawyer for a DUI Case
Due to the significant penalties that you can face for a DUI, you need aggressive representation from a DUI attorney who knows the local court system. A Hudson County DUI lawyer from William Proetta Criminal Law can help by:
- Explaining the charges against you and potential penalties involved – New Jersey’s drunk driving statute is full of small details that can have a big impact on the potential penalties you may face in a DUI case. We can find out what exactly it is you have been charged with, which prosecutor and judge are assigned to your case, what the potential penalties are, and create a strategy to help defend you against the charges.
- Examining the evidence against you – Police and prosecutors would have you believe roadside sobriety tests are always 100 percent accurate, but this is not the case. Testing machines can break down over time, and the machines need to be used properly in order to get an accurate reading. As a certified Standardized Field Sobriety Testing instructor, William Proetta can determine whether any mistakes were made by police or prosecutors. If the evidence against you is faulty, you may be able to have the charges against you dismissed.
- Seeking to have the potential penalties for a DUI reduced – There is usually some wiggle room in the potential penalties for a DUI in New Jersey. An experienced DUI lawyer can negotiate with prosecutors to potentially lower the penalties you may face, sparing you from the worst possible outcomes.
There Are Many Common Defenses Used in DUI Cases
Challenging a DUI charge can be difficult, but it is possible with help from a knowledgeable lawyer from William Proetta Criminal Law. The most common defenses used in Hudson County DUI cases include:
- No cause to stop your vehicle – Police usually need a reason to stop someone suspected of DUI, such as witnessing the driver acting erratically. If you can show the police did not have a legitimate reason to stop your vehicle, you may be able to have your case thrown out.
- Challenging sobriety tests – Breath test machines are complex pieces of equipment that need to be used and maintained properly if police wish to obtain an accurate reading. We can look at the machine used to conduct the test, as well as how the test was administered, and seek to have the evidence dismissed if the results are illegitimate. In addition, the use of non-standardized field sobriety tests can be critiqued as they are not valid indicators of intoxication.
- Suppressing illegally obtained evidence – You cannot be compelled to turn over certain types of evidence in DUI cases, such as urine samples. If police illegally force you to turn over a urine sample or other evidence, your attorney can seek to have the evidence suppressed, which could greatly affect the outcome of your case.
- You were not driving the vehicle – Police must show you were the one in control of the vehicle at the time of the alleged offense. If you can show that you were not driving the car when your vehicle was stopped, your attorney from William Proetta Criminal Law can seek to have your charges dismissed.
Understanding the Penalties for DUI Conviction in Hudson County
Depending on your registered BAC level, how many prior offenses you have on your record, and other factors, you could face serious penalties for a DUI conviction, including:
- Surcharges (additional fees for multiple years after a DUI offense)
- Community service time
- Having your driver’s license suspended or revoked
- Mandatory substance abuse counseling
- Having an ignition interlock device installed on your car
- Jail time
Hudson County DUI FAQs
Here are the answers to some of the most common questions our attorneys at William Proetta Criminal Law receive about DUI cases in Hudson County, N.J.:
A DUI charge might be dismissed by the trial court or by a prosecutor when the state lacks sufficient evidence to prove that a driver was operating their vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. For example, if the results of an alcotest breathalyzer test are invalidated due to errors in the testing procedure or an improperly calibrated testing device, a DUI charge might be thrown out due to the state’s inability to prove the driver’s intoxication. Or if a driver is arrested on suspicion of drugged driving, a charge might be thrown out if no urine or blood test is performed to detect the presence of drugs in the driver’s system.
The standard BAC limit for drivers in New Jersey is 0.08 percent. The limit for commercial drivers, however, is 0.04 percent. The limit for drivers under age 21 is 0.02 percent.
In most cases, a DUI in New Jersey is a traffic offense, not an indictable crime, or felony. However, you could face an indictable charge if you hurt or killed someone while driving drunk, or if you attempted to flee the scene of a crash that involved injury or death.
There are a few ways in which a DUI charge can be dismissed. Most of these methods involve challenging the evidence used by police when they made the initial arrest. If the evidence against you is incorrect or was obtained illegally, you may be able to have a DUI dismissed.
DUI and DWI are used interchangeably to describe someone driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol, so there’s no real difference between these terms.
Being charged with a DUI while a child is a passenger is a second-degree indictable offense in New Jersey. If the child is age 17 or younger, you could be charged with endangering the welfare of a child in addition to driving while intoxicated. This is a second-degree felony and carries a harsh penalty of five to 10 years in prison.
Get Advice from a Trusted Hudson County DUI Lawyer Now
If you have been charged with DUI in Hudson County, don’t despair. Contact William Proetta Criminal Law today for a free consultation with a Hudson County DUI lawyer to find out how we can help.