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New Jersey Drug DUI Lawyer

New Jersey’s DUI law covers not only alcohol, but essentially any foreign substance that would impair a person’s ability to safely drive. Proving these cases is more complicated for prosecutors as breathalyzer tests cannot prove the consumption of these substances.

Therefore, short of a blood test, the prosecutor must rely upon the arresting officer’s observations of the defendant as evidence of impairment. New Jersey drug DUI lawyers work with potential clients to contest these charges and protect their freedom. It may be critical to contact a skilled DUI attorney before proceeding with your case.

New Jersey DUI Drug Laws

One often forgotten aspect of New Jersey’s DUI statute is the language concerning the use of drugs. The statute makes it illegal to be impaired by alcohol, but it also includes narcotics, hallucinogens, or habit-producing drugs. This certainly covers illicit drugs such as heroin, cocaine, or even marijuana. However, this may also include prescription medications for pain, mental disorders, or other legally obtained medicines. 

Even if a person pulled over produces a valid doctor’s prescription for the medication they have taken, if the officer makes the judgment call that that person’s driving was impaired due to taking the medicine, they can charge the driver with DUI. Because of this, an arrest for DUI due to drug use is often more nuanced than a DUI arrest for alcohol. Alcohol may be proven by the use of a breathalyzer test, and this can be done at the scene of the traffic stop.

Proving Intoxication

Only blood tests can definitively prove that a person has drugs in their system. An officer’s training and experience can point them toward intoxication, but these subjective standards are far more difficult to prove in court. New Jersey drug DUI lawyers examine the officer’s subjective findings and cross examine them on those findings at trial.

Penalties for Drug DUIs

The penalties for drug based DUIs are identical to those for alcohol and are found in NJ Statute 39:4-50. These include:

  • Loss of license until an ignition interlock is installed
  • Paying a minimum of $3,675
  • Attending a drug education course for at least 12 hours
  • Required installation of ignition interlock; interlock required for three months
  • Be imprisoned for no more than 30 days

As can be seen, a conviction under this statute carries potentially severe repercussions.

Hiring a Lawyer

If you have been charged with DUI due to your being under the influence of drugs, New Jersey Drug DUI lawyers are here to help. They can examine every aspect of your case from the officer’s reasons for pulling you over to start with, to how they made the determination that the driver was under the influence, to any tests they performed to come to that conclusion.