Marijuana Legalization – Are You On The Hook for Your Marijuana DWI?
Posted by Scott Gorman - August 10, 2018

Here at The Gorman Law Firm, we like to keep our clients informed on how we can help them if they ever encounter any trouble with the law. Governor Murphy came into office promising to reshape New Jersey’s marijuana laws; however, six months into his administration, his efforts to make marijuana legal for recreational purposes have yet to get off of the ground. One of the concerns raised by some lawmakers who oppose the move is that the legalization of marijuana could result in more motorists driving while high.

Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana

Under New Jersey’s DWI law, it is unlawful to drive while under the influence marijuana or any other narcotic, hallucinogenic or habit-producing drug. A first-time conviction for driving while high on marijuana will result in a minimum seven-month driver’s license suspension and mandatory monetary penalties in excess of four thousand dollars. Subsequent offenses carry the potential for community service and imprisonment. While determining whether a driver is guilty of DWI based on the consumption of alcohol can be rather simple – the results of a breath test may suffice – the method for determining whether a person is under the influence of marijuana is much different. As a result, defending against a charge of driving while under the influence of marijuana requires a nuanced approach.

What if recreational marijuana becomes legal? While the police may not be able to arrest you for smoking, they will still be able to arrest you for driving under the influence of marijuana. Think about it: Alcohol is legal (if you are age 21 or over); however, it is still illegal to drink and drive.

Preparing for Your Marijuana DWI Case

If you have been charged with a marijuana DWI, it is important to carefully review all of the evidence that the State provides in advance of the trial with your attorney. There are times when the circumstances surrounding an arresting officer’s initial interaction with a driver can provide a complete defense to the charge of marijuana DWI. In other cases, the State may be unable to prove that a driver was actually influenced by marijuana.

We educate our clients about how marijuana DWI cases are prosecuted, and we work closely with our clients to develop defense strategies that are custom-tailored to the unique facts of their cases. We also counsel our clients regarding the potential risks and benefits associated with various defense strategies so that they can make informed decisions about protecting their futures.

The Long-Term Consequences of a Marijuana DWI Conviction

A marijuana DWI conviction can have long-term consequences that extend far beyond fines and temporary loss of your driving privileges. A conviction can have a tremendous impact on your family, your job and your reputation within the community. With so much at stake and so much uncertainty, it is only natural to feel nervous and unsettled. To make sure you and your loved ones do not face any unnecessary consequences, it is important that you speak with an experienced defense attorney as soon as possible.

Contact Essex County DWI Lawyer Scott Gorman

For more information about the strategies that are available for defending against marijuana DWI charges in New Jersey, please contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation. To discuss your case with Essex County DWI lawyer Scott Gorman in confidence, call 201-489-9199 or tell us how to reach you online now.

Published in Categories: DUI / DWI