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2nd DWI mandatory jail time?

Millville, NJ |

Well I just posted a question on this site and got a sufficient answer, but wanted to clarify for my sanity at the moment. I got a 2nd DWI. The 48 hours in IDRC will "satisfy" as in replace the 2 days of jail? So I may not have to go to jail? Just wanted to know. I am going to prepare my own defense partially and probably use the public defender, but there is a possibility that I can stay out of jail? Or am I going regardless?

..and how would it work talking to the prosecutor? Do I plea bargain the terms of my conviction or should I allow the public defender and myself to settle it with the judge?

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Attorney answers 6


Correct, jail for a second DUI is not mandatory, though it is for a third. You should retain an attorney nonetheless as the penalties can be quite serious including a two year loss of license and hefty fines.

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The statute says that 2 days in jail is technically mandatory, you may get a judge that would allow SLAP, but that depends. IDRC is an additional requirement. Get an attorney, do not do this on your own.

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The 48 hours in IDRC will "satisfy" as in replace the 2 days of jail? Yes. The 48 hours is an overnight stay. If you get the public defender, he will speak with the prosecutor, not you.

If you are represented by the public defender or any attorney, the prosecutor cannot speak with you. There is no plea bargaining for a DWI as per the directive of the NJ Supreme Court. It is either a guilty plea or trial. Unless there are aggravating factors, the judge most likely would impose the minimum mandatory penalties required by the statute. It is commendable that you wish to take an active part in your own defense but, get the public defender, if you qualify. If not, retain a private attorney.


It depends on the BAC and other factors. However jail is usally satified by the IDRC. How to handle the case and proceed is very difficult to teach in a forum such as AVVO. Call an attorney or speak to the PD.

Michael J Palumbo

Michael J Palumbo


I think he should call you. I do not want him calling me because he has clearly expressed an intent to not retain counsel.


There is no plea bargaining on a second DWI. The prosecutor cannot downgrade or dismiss the DWI and your penalties are the same whether you plead guilty or go to trial and get convicted. If you try to represent yourself, you will lose. Defending a DWI charged requires extensive knowledge of the law and experience with the facts that are important and those that are not.


If you are going to prepare your own defense and get a free lawyer then why should any lawyer here help you? What's in it for them? You want to go it alone hit the law library, but do not expect sage legal advice from lawyers who do not do this as a hobby but to feed their families.

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