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This site was constructed for the purposes of providing information relating to The Law Offices of
Jonathan F. Marshall and the members of such firm. You are not considered a client of the firm until
you have signed a retainer agreement and your case has been accepted by one of our attorneys.

Note on Prior Results: Prior results, notwithstanding the similarity of circumstances, do not guarantee or predict a similar outcome with respect to any pending or future matter.

Bergen County Refusal to Submit to a Breath Sample Lawyer

Cliffside Park NJ Refusal to Submit to a Breath Sample Attorneys

If you or a loved one has been charged with Refusing to Submit to a Breath Sample in towns like Edgewater, Fort Lee, City of Englewood or Elmwood Park The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can help.  An individual charged with refusal to submit to a breath sample will also be charged with driving while intoxicated, these two charges go hand and hand. However, with that being said these are two separate offenses under the law and both carry their own versions of harsh penalties.  On staff at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is two former municipal prosecutors, each of whom have prosecuted thousands of DWI and Refusal charges throughout their careers.  Also on staff is Colin Bonus, Esq., the handling attorney on the infamous State v. O’Driscol case. The New Jersey Appellate Division in State v. O’Driscol changed the required procedures for a refusal charge in New Jersey. Here is some of the pertinent information regarding a refusal to submit to a breath sample, including the applicable penalties.

What the Municipal Prosecutor must Prove Beyond a Reasonable Doubt:

Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 39:4-50.2, the State must prove six material elements:

    1. That the arresting officer had probable cause to believe that the defendant was operating  a motor vehicle while being under the influence of alcohol,
    2. That the said operation took place on a public road, street, highway or quasi-public area;
    3. That the defendant was in fact arrested for the aforesaid operation,
    4. That the defendant refused to submit to the Alcotest machine;
    5. That the request for the defendant to take the test was made by a police officer who had reasonable grounds to believe that the defendant had been operating a motor vehicle while being intoxicated; & lastly
    6. That the attempt to administer the Alcotest machine was conducted in accordance with the provisions of the implied consent statute.

It is important to note here that the law is well established that anything “substantially short of an unqualified, unequivocal assent to an officer’s request”  by the defendant to submit a breath sample to the Alcotest machine will constittutes a refusal to submit to a breath sample, in violation of N.J.S.A. 39:4-50.2.

Applicable Penalties if Convicted:

First Offense Violation:

    • If a defendant is convicted of refusal to submit to a breath test, the Presiding Judge must suspend the defendant’s license for a time period of not less than seven (7) months but not more than one (1) year.  The defendant will also be fined anywhere between $450.00 to $1000.00, be required to attend an Intensive Drivers Resource Center for twelve hours and must install the ignition interlock device.
      • If the Defendant is also convicted of driving while intoxicated, the Judge has the discretion to run the underline drivers license suspension either consecutively or concurrently.

Second Offense Violation:

    • If a defendant is convicted of a second refusal to submit a breath sample offense or refusal in connection with a second offense of driving while intoxicated they will be subjected to a mandatory two-year loss of their driver’s license. The license suspension must be imposed consecutively to any term of suspension imposed for a related driving while intoxicated conviction. In addition, the defendant will be fined anywhere between  $700.00 to $1300.00, be required to attend an Intensive Drivers Resource Center for forty-eight hours and must install the ignition interlock device.

Third or Subsequent Offense:

    • If the defendant’s refusal to submit to a breath sample  is in connection with a third or subsequent drunken driving offense, the defendant will be treated as a third offender for sentencing purposes under the refusal statute as well. Therefore, the Judge must suspend the defendant’s driver’s license for a 10 year period. This period of license loss must be served consecutively to any suspension imposed as a result of a companion drunk driving conviction. In addition, the defendant will be fined approximately  $1300.00, be required to attend an Intensive Drivers Resource Center and must install the ignition interlock device. The key difference here between this offense and a third offense DWI conviction is the fact that there is no mandatory 180 days in the Bergen County Jail.

Unmatched DWI / Refusal Defense Qualifications

As you can see the applicable penalties for refusing to submit to a breath sample can be devastating to not only your life but on your families as well.  If you or a loved one has been charged with driving while intoxicated or refusing to submit to a breath sample in towns like East Rutherford, Lodi, Garfield, Teaneck, Palisades Interstate Park or anywhere else in Bergen County for that matter we can help. Please contact any one of our Bergen County Offices if you have any questions with regards to a refusal to submit to a breath sample.

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Site Disclaimers

This site was constructed for the purposes of providing information relating to The Law Offices of
Jonathan F. Marshall and the members of such firm. You are not considered a client of the firm until
you have signed a retainer agreement and your case has been accepted by one of our attorneys.

Note on Prior Results: Prior results, notwithstanding the similarity of circumstances, do not guarantee or predict a similar outcome with respect to any pending or future matter.