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New Jersey Municipal Court Violations Law Blog

Shielding your teen from the dangers of underage drinking

Underage drinking is a rampant problem nationwide. Approximately one in five teens consumes alcohol, and one in seven struggles with binge drinking, according to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. In New Jersey, those numbers are even starker: Nearly 30 percent of minors aged 12-20 have had alcohol in the past month, and 20 percent have engaged in binge drinking.

Underage drinking can lead to a whole host of problems. On top of the health, safety and addiction risks, the legal ramifications can take a serious toll on your teen's future. A conviction for underage drinking (or underage DUI) could come back to haunt them on college applications and job opportunities. In the short term, the penalties could include significant fines, loss of driving privileges, community service and participation in an alcohol education program.

Drunk driving could result in deportation

A drunk driving arrest can be incredibly stressful for anyone. Your driving privileges, reputation and potentially your employment are all on the line.

For an undocumented immigrant, however, a DUI charge could also mean being deported - especially in light of the Trump administration's crackdown on immigration issues. As at least one prominent case has illustrated, your entire life could be uprooted, even if you have a clean record and play a strong role in your community.

What to do - and not to do - if you get pulled over

The majority of traffic stops start off as routine events. Sadly, they can become tragic in short order. Following several incidents where police officers killed motorists or vice versa, more legislators are working to train drivers how to respond to being pulled over. Here are some tips that might help you make it through a stop.

Know the law: Can I refuse a breathalyzer test?

It's a pretty common question. You may have even talked to your friends about it at the bar. Can you refuse to take a breathalyzer test?

If you're looking for a way to avoid a potential DUI, it may be a question on your mind. In New Jersey, the answer is clear.

Keeping teen drivers safe - and on the right side of the law

It's a milestone for teens - and the start of many sleepless nights for parents. Your son or daughter has just gotten their driver's license. Raising a safe, responsible driver is one of your highest priorities. Traffic violations can not only put your teen's life at risk; they can also rack up points against your son or daughter's driving record.

How DWIs affect truck drivers

For truck drivers, a DWI isn't just a traffic offense. It can also jeopardize your livelihood.

Truckers and other commercial drivers are held to higher standards than the general public when it comes to driving sober. The blood alcohol limit for non-commercial drivers is .08%. For CDL holders, however, that limit is cut in half - to .04%.

What are the consequences?

Underage DUI can derail your teen's future

No parent wants to hear the dreaded news that their child has been in a car accident - or, even worse, that they were drinking behind the wheel. Yet it happens far more often than you'd think.

Teen drivers already face an alarmingly higher risk of crashing. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, they're three times more likely to get into accidents than older drivers. Add drinking into the equation, and you have a recipe for tragedy.

The legal consequences of underage DUI

Which traffic violations can potentially cost you your license?

It's easy to take your driving privileges for granted - until you're on the verge of losing them.

New Jersey uses a points system to track traffic violations and penalize drivers who get too many tickets. If you have six or more points against your license within a three-year period, you'll get hit with a surcharge. With twelve or more points, your license will be suspended. Moving violations can also affect your insurance rates.

Facial recognition tools in law enforcement: Is Big Brother watching you?

Most of us are familiar with facial recognition software from TV shows and movies. Investigators use computers to swiftly locate suspects and solve crimes - all with the touch of a button.

Yet here's a startling fact few of us realize: Facial recognition software isn't purely fictional. The FBI has been using it for years. So, too, are a growing number of state and local law enforcement agencies.

What a DUI means for college students

It's that time of year: Classes are starting up again, athletic team practices are well underway, and college students across the state are reconnecting with familiar faces and meeting new friends. It's also the time of year for parties. Homecoming, Halloween, frat mixers and other get-togethers often result in an uptick in DUI arrests.

So what, exactly, can college students expect if they're facing DUI charges?

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