Is there a difference between DUI and DWI?

Posted August 22nd, 2014 by .

Categories: Criminal Defense.

DUI-DWI-Attorney-Anthony-CarboneWhile on your way from the bar, you get stopped by the police. They ask you take a sobriety test and do a Breathalyzer. They say you are over the limit that you are being arrested for DWI. What makes DWI different than a DUI?

Not much. Both charges mean that you were operating a vehicle while you were impaired by either alcohol or drugs or in some cases both. However, in some states, there is a clear difference between the two.

If you are charged with driving under the influence (DUI), this is considered the lesser offense in some states. This means your blood alcohol concentration is over the state limit but not by much. It could also mean that you were driving under the influence of drugs, not alcohol. In New Jersey, a DUI is considered your first offense and your BAC was above 0.08% but below 0.10%. The punishment can include your license being suspended, several fines and community service.

However, if you were charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI), this is the high offense. This means that either your BAC was way above the state limit or, as it is in New Jersey, you are under the influence of drugs. And as you can imagine, the punishments for a DWI is more severe than that of a DUI. With a DWI, you could face prison time, several fines and a locking system on your car’s ignition.

Have you been charged with a DUI or a DWI? We are here to help you! For more than 25 years, the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone, PC has been helping Jersey City residents with their DUIs and DWIs. Contact us today and we will help you with your case.


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