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New Jersey Traffic Ticket Attorneys
If not handled properly, a speeding ticket, reckless driving charge, DWI charge or another arrest for a New Jersey traffic offense can become a serious legal problem. Many people make the mistake of thinking they should pay a fine and move on, only to suffer long-term consequences.
Pleading or being found guilty of a traffic offense in New Jersey may cost you a fine and jail time, loss of driving privileges, and years of higher auto insurance premiums. If there was a car accident that left someone else injured, you could be sued and held responsible for the accident on the record.
If you have received a traffic ticket or have been arrested for a more serious traffic offense in New Jersey, let us help you. We will take your case seriously, as should you. People from across New Jersey are happy they turned to our law firm for help because:
- We have selectively created one of the largest and most experienced legal defense teams in New Jersey, with seven skilled lawyers and a large staff of legal professionals and support personnel. We can put the time and energy into developing a defense for you that other firms cannot and will not.
- Our attorneys are former New Jersey prosecutors and public defenders who have spent decades in municipal and county courtrooms across New Jersey. We have the legal knowledge, experience and professional contacts necessary to quickly and easily resolve traffic offense charges in a manner most beneficial to you.
A New Jersey defense attorney from the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can help minimize the risks you face for a traffic offense. Because our firm has nine offices in New Jersey, we can begin immediately to reach out to our contacts and look into the circumstances of your case.
Call or fill out our online form for a free initial consultation with one of our experienced New Jersey traffic ticket lawyers today.
What Can a N.J. Traffic Offense Cost You?
You do not have the right to a driver’s license. It is a privilege that the State New Jersey can and will take away if you violate state traffic laws. Penalties for the most significant traffic offenses in New Jersey also include heavy fines and jail time.
Numerous traffic violations in New Jersey can result in fines ranging from $26 to more than $500, with many costing $54 to $140. Charges like DWI, reckless driving and eluding (fleeing) police are punishable by hundreds of dollars in fines plus active jail time and loss of driving privileges, with more severe punishment for multiple offenses.
A traffic offense can cost you in two additional ways in New Jersey:
New Jersey Surcharge Violation System (NJSVS): Drivers who have been convicted for certain offenses are liable for surcharges. Surcharges are payments you must make every year for three years in addition to any court fines and penalties. You could pay an annual surcharge of:
- $100 for being an unlicensed driver or driving with an expired license ($300 total)
- $250 for driving with a suspended license ($750 total)
- $250 for operating a vehicle without auto liability insurance ($750 total)
- $100 for failure to insure a moped ($300 total)
- $1,000 for first and second driving while intoxicated (DUI) ($3,000 total)
- $1,500 for a third DUI within three years of a previous offense ($4,500 total)
- $1,000 for refusing to take a test to measure blood alcohol concentration (BAC) ($3,000 total)
- $150 plus $25 per point for accumulating 6 or more points on your driver’s license within 3 years.
Failing to make a surcharge payment will result in a driver’s license suspension. Afterward, it will cost $100 plus the surcharges owed to get your license back. If payment is still not made, the matter goes to Superior Court, which issues a judgment allowing the state to collect unpaid surcharges. At this point, the matter goes to a collection agency, and collection costs and interest charges are added to what’s owed.
Driving Record Points: If you are convicted of a moving violation, the N.J. Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will penalize you by adding points to your driving record. If you get 6 or more points within 3 years, you will be assessed a surcharge (see above). If you get 12 or more points on your record, your license will be suspended. Having points on your license will also increase your insurance rates.
Among the many violations that will result in points on your driving record are:
- Leaving the scene of an accident that caused personal injury: 8 points
- Reckless driving: 5 points
- Tailgating (following too closely): 5 points
- Racing: 5 points
- Improperly passing a school bus: 5 points
- Improperly passing a frozen dessert (ice cream) truck: 4 points
- Improper passing: 4 points
- Driving in an unsafe manner (third or subsequent offense within five years): 4 points
- Improper turn at a traffic light: 3 points
- Improper right, left or U-turn: 3 points
- Careless driving: 2 points
- Failure to yield at an intersection: 2 points
- Failure to yield to pedestrian in crosswalk: 2 points
- Passing a vehicle yielding to pedestrian in crosswalk: 2 points
- Failure to observe traffic signals: 2 points
- Wrong way on a one-way street: 2 points
- Failure to observe (stay within) traffic lanes: 2 points
- Leaving the scene of an accident with no personal injury: 2 points
- Moving violation committed out-of-state: 2 points
- Exceeding speed limit by 30 mph or more: 5 points
- Exceeding speed limit by 15-29 mph: 4 points
- Exceeding speed limit by 1-14 mph: 2 points.
Note that charges that result in a driver’s license suspension upon conviction, such as DWI, do not put points on your driving record.
The MVC deducts 3 points from your record every year you go without a new moving violation charge. Drivers who have accumulated 12 to 14 points in more than two years may take the Driver Improvement Program classroom course (for a fee) in lieu of a 30-day driver’s license suspension, and have 3 points removed from their record. You may have 2 points removed once every five years for completing an MVC-approved defensive driving course.
Your auto insurance provider might not factor these deductions into your insurance rate.
New Jersey Traffic Offenses Our Law Firm Handles
During our decades as public defenders, prosecutors and, now, criminal defense attorneys in New Jersey, we have handled numerous traffic offenses of all kinds. Some of the traffic offenses our law firm can assist you with today include:
The sooner you engage an attorney from the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall to help you with a traffic ticket or a more serious offense, the sooner we can begin negotiations to reduce charges against you and/or challenge the evidence against you, or even how you were arrested.
How We Can Help You With a N.J. Traffic Offense
Most traffic offenses are heard by the N.J. Municipal Court within the city or town where the ticket or charge was issued.
Just like in a criminal case, if you do not plead guilty, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you violated the law to obtain a conviction. You have the right to challenge any traffic ticket or charge, and have the additional right to have a lawyer make your case for you.
As your defense attorneys, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall will investigate the circumstances of the traffic charges you face and raise the questions that make the prosecutor’s task as difficult as possible.
In many cases, we can have traffic offense charges reduced or dismissed, particularly if you have a clean record and good standing in your community or school, or there are weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. Charges that cannot be dismissed may be reduced so that a fine is the only penalty, with no lasting points, surcharges, etc.
An alternative to dismissal is Conditional Discharge, a New Jersey probation program you may be eligible for. This requires that you have no previous conviction or prior diversion on your record (for example, Conditional Discharge, Pretrial Intervention, Drug Court, or a similar program in another state). You must also not be charged with or any disorderly persons offense or petty disorderly persons offense under New Jersey’s Comprehensive Drug Reform Act of 1987.
A Conditional Discharge probation requires you to remain arrest-free for a year and comply with other requirements during this period ( pay any fines, court costs, etc.). Upon completion of the probation period, the original charge is removed from your record.
If it is necessary to go to court, we will prepare a solid defense for you.
For a moving offense, for example, the prosecution’s evidence must include proof of operation of the vehicle and, in many cases, intent to commit the offense. Proving “operation” customarily requires actual observations of operation or circumstantial evidence demonstrating that the accused was operating or possessed an intention to operate the vehicle.
The prosecution typically attempts to establish “intent” by presenting evidence that the defendant placed the keys of the vehicle in the ignition and/or that the vehicle was running.
Our lawyers are sensitive to the complicated nature of the issues of “operation” and “intent,” are prepared to defend clients on this issue whenever a potentially viable defense exists.
In addition to evidence that supports the defendant’s exoneration or reduced/dropped charges, traffic offenses may be dismissed because of:
- Lack of probable cause
- Failure to advise of Miranda rights in an arrest
- Mistaken identity
- Unreliable or unavailable witnesses
Making a deal with prosecutors in a N.J. Municipal Court requires a defense attorney to have a positive professional relationship with prosecutors who handle traffic cases in the local court. It also requires an attorney who understands what New Jersey law makes possible and whose firm makes the time and resources available to properly investigate and challenge traffic offenses. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can provide that protection to you.
Meet With Our New Jersey Traffic Offense Lawyers
If you have been issued a traffic ticket or charged with a more serious traffic offense anywhere in New Jersey, an attorney from the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can work to seek the best available outcome for you. With an experienced attorney dedicated to taking traffic court seriously in your corner, there are opportunities to avoid severe penalties, such as high fines, loss of your freedom or driver’s license, and points on your driving record.
An initial legal consultation with a lawyer from the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is always free. Contact usat any of our nine locations across New Jersey as soon as possible.