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New York expected to strengthen some DWI penalties


New Jersey drivers know that the level of penalties associated with drunk driving convictions are steep and not to be taken lightly. Loss of driving privileges, fines, jail time and more are all on the line when DUI arrests are made. Every state has unique laws that govern these consequences and sometimes it can be interesting to learn what other states’ laws are. For New Jersey residents, understanding the laws in New York may be wise as many people from New Jersey commonly drive in the state of New York given the proximity of the two states.

A new bill that would strengthen the penalties for people convicted of some drunk driving offenses is awaiting the signature of New York’s Governor. Once signed, the law would apply to all cases that initiate after November 1, 2014 and is titled Vince’s Law. Vince’s Law would pose felony charges on persons convicted of three DWI or associated offenses within a period of 15 years. Until now, these charges have been processed as misdemeanors.

The man after whom the bill was named was allegedly killed in a drunk driving accident by a driver with an extremely high blood alcohol content (BAC) and who had several prior DWI convictions on his record. Drivers who are charged and found guilty under Vince’s Law could end up spending as many as seven years in jail. They could also be liable to pay as much as $10,000 in fines.

A DWI defense is always something to take seriously whether for a misdemeanor or a felony. Persons arrested on DUI or DWI charges sometimes find it helpful to talk to a private defense attorney.

Source:, “Cuomo to approve 3-strikes felony DWI law,” August 1, 2014

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