Please note that the following discussion should be understood only as a general overview. This is not legal advice. Consult with a licensed attorney for advice as to a specific legal matter.
It has been reported that drivers under the age of 21 represent 10% of licensed drivers in the United States. However, it is also been reported that this 10% are responsible for 17% of fatal alcohol related accidents. It has been estimated that at least 2000 underage drinkers die each year behind the wheel and a third of the time alcohol is a factor in all teenage auto fatalities. This article will discuss the New Jersey laws driving and proscribing underage drinking and driving. This is in addition to New Jersey laws against DUI.
It is important to note that the drinking age of New Jersey is 21 and the consumption of alcohol by any person under the age of 21 is illegal with the following exceptions:
- If such consumption is done on private, non-alcohol selling premises, with the consent of a legal guardian. For example, with a legal guardian’s permission at a party or a little wine at a family dinner
- If the consumption of alcohol is for religious purposes, for example drinking wine at a religious ceremony
- If the consumption of alcohol is for medical purposes, for example, a physician administering a medical treatment
- If the consumption is for educational purposes, for example, studying at a culinary school
The penalties associated with persons under the age of 21 who drive with any detectable trace of alcohol in their system detectable at a level of 0.01% up to 0.079% and who are convicted for violating New Jersey’s zero tolerance law include:
- Loss or postponement of driving privileges for 30 to 90 days
- 15 to 30 days of community service
- Participation in an alcohol and traffic safety education program
In addition, a N.J.S. 39: 4-50 statutory penalties apply if testing were to produce a breath or blood results of 0.08% or higher for first drunk driving conviction this can include:
If you are under the age of 21 and are facing a DUI charge, seek out of the assistance of Bartholomew Baffuto, Esquire, a criminal attorney Jersey City.