Sometimes a charge can get expunged from your record, which means that it will no longer come up on most background or employment checks. Sometimes people meet with a Bergen County, New Jersey DUI lawyer at our firm and ask if they can get their previous DUI charge expunged. Unfortunately, we never have good news for them. You cannot expunge a DUI or DWI in New Jersey.
Why Can’t My DUI Be Expunged?
The only kind of charges that can be expunged in New Jersey are criminal offenses. DUI and DWI charges are not considered to be criminal offenses. They are traffic offenses, so they cannot be expunged from your record.
This can be worrying for many people. A DUI staying on your record can cause a variety of problems.
What Issues Can This Charge Cause?
One of the biggest problems with having a DUI charge on your record is that getting stopped for another offense can carry even harsher penalties. The state of New Jersey takes such charges seriously, so it continues to pile on the punishments if it looks like a driver is going to be a repeat offender. On a second or third offense, you could be facing:
- Mandatory jail time
- A loss of your driver’s license for as long as 10 years
- Fines of up to $1,000
- The installation of an ignition interlock device for up to three years
There are also personal and professional complications. Someone with a DUI on their record may look unreliable or irresponsible. Your record could affect you when you:
- Look for housing
- Try to secure a loan or financing
- Apply for jobs
- Fight for child custody
- Apply for a professional license
This is a serious charge that is going to continue to follow you.
What Should I Do When I Am Charged With a DUI?
That is why you need to avoid putting yourself in this position in the first place. When you are charged with a DUI, you need to contact a lawyer as soon as you can.
A lawyer can help you fight this charge and formulate a defensive strategy. They can:
- Get evidence thrown out
- Argue that the traffic stop was bad or illegal
- Argue that the breathalyzer was not calibrated properly
- Question how the arresting officer administered field sobriety tests
When you have an experienced criminal defense attorney by your side, you can try to beat this DUI charge. If you can do that, you do not have to worry about getting anything expunged later.
Schedule a Free Consultation
If you have been charged with a DUI or DWI, you have no time to waste. Contact the Law Office of E. Gregory M. Cannarozzi and schedule an appointment. We can tell you more about your legal options and how we can help you fight for your rights in this free initial consultation.