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Are you ready to pay the price for a DUI?

Skating by with a slap on the wrist following a drunk driving arrest is fast becoming a thing of the past. In New Jersey and other states, lawmakers are listening to safety advocates who urge them to tighten the laws and heighten the penalties for DUI convictions. As a result, sentences that were optional or reserved for more serious cases are now becoming the norm.

In fact, time behind bars is mandatory in some cases, and judges have no option for converting this to alternative sentencing. If you are facing DUI charges, even a first-offense, you have a lot at stake and much to prepare for.

Ignition interlock devices: What are they and who may need one?

The state of New Jersey does not treat drunk driving lightly. If a criminal court convicts you on a DUI charge, you may face fines, incarceration, license suspension and the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.

An ignition interlock device prevents you from starting your vehicle if the device reads you have alcohol in your system. This piece of equipment allows DUI offenders the ability to drive if they are able to stay sober. Without this option, DUI offenders would just have to wait until their license suspension periods are up before they can drive again.

There are different types of assault charges in New Jersey

Sometimes a night on the town may get a bit more raucous than expected. Unfortunately, even though you may not plan to end up in an altercation, it could happen.

Scenarios can escalate quickly, and if threats of harm or unwanted physical contact take place, the possibility exists that law enforcement officers could get involved. As a result, you, and possibly others involved in an altercation, could wind up facing criminal charges.

Shoplifting is expensive for everyone

Shoplifting may sound like a minor thing. After all, you may have taken things from stores as a kid just for the thrill of it or when your allowance didn't stretch enough for you to afford things you wanted. As an adult, you may not be aware of the true consequences of shoplifting.

Retailers lose billions of dollars each year to shoplifting and other kinds of theft, and this loss is not easy to absorb, especially for a small business owner. This is why many retail establishments are becoming more diligent about prevent shoplifting and are more willing to prosecute those they catch in the act.

Facts that may surprise you regarding field sobriety tests

It's dark outside, and you are on your way home from a fun evening out with friends. It is raining, so there is a slight glare on the road, and your visibility isn't all that great. When a New Jersey police officer pulls you over and says that your tires were veering onto the yellow line, you weren't all that surprised since the road conditions were less than optimal at the time. You figured you would explain that and, perhaps, the officer would issue a warning, then send you on your way.

That's not what happened. Instead, the New Jersey law enforcement officer asked you to step out of your vehicle -- a potential sign that you are under suspicion for drunk driving. The next request was for you to take a field sobriety test. You had enjoyed a drink or two with your friends, so you were immediately nervous about that idea. There are several facts about field sobriety tests that you may not know, which can greatly affect a situation like yours, either positively or in a very negative way. 

The consequences of points on your driving record

You are not alone if you sometimes feel the rules of the road are frustrating. Waiting at a traffic light when no other cars are on the road or staying under the speed limit when you are in a hurry can tempt you to take matters into your own hands. However, ignoring the traffic laws can result in stiff consequences, including losing your privileges to drive, and you may present a danger to other drivers.

Traffic tickets can cover dozens of infractions. You may not think much about it when the officer asks for your signature and hands you a ticket for speeding, making an illegal turn or running a red light. You will probably have a court date and a fine. However, look closer at the ticket and you will see that the officer may have assessed points on your license.

Fighting charges of domestic violence

If your separation, divorce or custody battle is growing more volatile, you may wake up each morning wondering what new frustration you will be dealing with. Your former partner has dug in, and you are also unwilling to compromise. Perhaps it has always been this way between you, or maybe some event raised the level of tension. In any case, you may not realize how quickly things can turn against you.

With one sentence, your former partner can change the course of your life, leaving you floundering on the defensive and watching everything you have worked for slip away. That one sentence is an accusation of domestic violence. In many cases, if someone accuses a person of domestic violence, New Jersey police have no choice but to make an arrest. If this happens to you, your troubles may be just beginning.

Marijuana possession is still illegal in New Jersey

There are probably few laws that vary as widely from state to state as those regarding the use of marijuana. One state may forbid both medical and recreational marijuana while its neighboring states may have much more lax laws regarding both. Federal law still considers possession of the drug a crime, even for medicinal purposes.

Whether you advocate for the recreational use of marijuana or you have found medical benefits from its use, it is important to know the risks you take if you violate the law. Even though laws governing marijuana may be less severe than those governing other controlled substances, you may still face harsh penalties for illegal possession.

Facing life problems because of prescription drugs?

You may be one of countless others in New Jersey as well as other states who is currently taking prescription medication. Doctors in all states often write orders for prescription drugs to treat a myriad of conditions, including some that are chronic and others with acute onsets due to particular incidents. Such drugs are often beneficial for alleviating pain, filling a body with antibiotics to fight infection or helping those who suffer from anxiety.  

The drugs doctors most commonly prescribe often include potentially dangerous side effects. Some are also highly addictive. If you or your family member are suffering from a substance abuse problem related to prescription drugs, you'll want to know that there are many support options available to help you beat addiction. If a particular drug situation has landed you in trouble with the law, there are also support resources to guide you through that process as well. Taking advantage of the help that's available may be a key to your success. 

What Our Clients Are Saying

  • "Sutnick & Sutnick are two truly outstanding lawyers. They have helped me with several difficult issues over the years, and have never failed me once.

    I wholeheartedly recommend them to whoever reads this, as I do to all my friends and family whenever they need help. They are kind, professional, and know what they’re doing." T.K.

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