DWI/DUI charges carry heavy penalties regardless of where they occurred, but a driver who gets charged with an out-of-state DUI may face doubled punishment. Get in touch with a Mercer County DUI lawyer if you’re facing a DUI charge from outside of NJ. Our legal team has experience tackling this and similar cases on both sides of the courtroom, and we’ll harness that knowledge for your benefit.
Defining Abbreviations: DWI versus DUI in NJ
While every state uses somewhat different terminology for intoxicated driving charges, the two main abbreviations are DWI and DUI. DWI means driving while intoxicated and DUI means driving under the influence.
Both describe the same circumstance of a person charged with taking so much of a mind-altering substance that they caused some kind of harm on a roadway, followed by taking a breathalyzer test administered by a police officer. This frequently involves alcohol—but not exclusively. Controlled substances or prescription drugs may be involved, instead or in conjunction with alcohol.
The Interstate Driver’s License Compact, DWI/DUIs, and New Jersayans
The IDLC (Interstate Driver’s License Compact) includes almost every state, except Georgia, Massachusetts, Michigan, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. Member states share records of driving arrests and convictions, such as DWIs/DUIs.
Because of this, if you commit a DWI/DUI in a member state, it is very possible you will face charges not just in the state where you were charged, but also in your home state. You may have your driving privileges revoked in the state where you were charged, and you may have to appear in that state’s court as well. For its part, New Jersey DWI/DUI charges are often harsh, including license suspensions and revocations, prison time, and community service.
If you’ve received a DWI/DUI in another state and then are charged with the same in New Jersey, courts may likely treat you as a repeat offender, even if this is your first DWI/DUI in the state.
Should your DWI/DUI take place in a state that has not joined the IDLC, the information regarding your offense might not be forwarded to your home state. Even so, you’ll still need to face charges in the issuing state.
Rather obviously, if you’re accused of a DUI in your home state or otherwise, you’re likely facing very harsh penalties that can impact you for years to come. Don’t face these charges on your own. Retain the services of a seasoned Mercer County DUI lawyer who can effectively fight for your rights, every step of the way.