DWI - The Hidden Costs
Failure to pay this surcharge can lead to additional problems. The State can:
- refuse to reinstate your driving privileges until the surcharge is paid in full;
- prevent you from selling property;
- report you to a collection agency;
- charge additional fees for collection and interest.
Moving out of State does not get you off the hook for this surcharge. If your driving privilege is suspended in New Jersey, you will be reported to the National Driver Registry, which is used by other states when issuing or renewing licenses within their jurisdiction. You can be refused a driver’s license in those states if you fail to pay your surcharge in New Jersey.
Furthermore, if you hold a New Jersey driver’s license and are convicted of a violation in another state equivalent to a New Jersey DWI, you can be assessed the New Jersey surcharge.Ignition Interlock DevicesThe court also may require you to get an ignition interlock device (IID), which will prevent you from starting your vehicle if your blood alcohol content (BAC) reads 0.05% or higher. You also will have to pay all costs associated with the IID, including installation, monthly service fees for calibration and monitoring, and removal once the penalty period has expired.The Effect of a DWI on Your InsuranceMost insurance companies, when learning of a DWI conviction, consider you a high risk. You will no longer be eligible for “safe driver” discounts, and your insurance rates most likely will increase dramatically.
In assessing your risk as a customer, insurance companies consider such factors as the specific details surrounding your DWI conviction; how long you have been their customer; and whether you have any other moving violations or insurance coverage lapses on your record. Depending on the answers to these questions, your coverage can be terminated altogether.Potential Loss of IncomeThere are no provisional licenses in New Jersey, meaning if your driver’s license is suspended as a result of a DWI, you are not allowed to drive at all during that suspension period – not even to work or school. If you are unable to make alternative transportation arrangements, you risk losing your job. You also risk losing any professional licenses you may hold, the right to obtain a driver’s license in another state, and even the ability to travel to some other countries. More Hidden CostsOther hidden costs associated with a DWI conviction include the cost of having your license restored, and any related jail and / or court costs, including lawyers’ fees. However, with so much at stake, it is advisable to seek the counsel of an experienced DWI attorney when faced with these charges.
In New Jersey, the validity of the DWI charge can be put into question. The attorneys at Rotolo Karch Law are experienced with defending against DWI charges. They will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding your specific case in an effort to mitigate the consequences. Call our offices today at (908) 534-7900 to set up a consultation.