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I received a bench warrant and plan to pay the fee for DWI, What happens next?

Mendham, NJ |

I got charged for DWI, also I didn't even get the letter to come to court due to the fact that they had the wrong address. I have court this month and my public defender is not contacting me back at all.

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Attorney answers 5


Answer: If you are planning on pleading guilty to DWI, depending on the number of DWI convictions you have had in the past, you will be looking at substantial fines, assessments, Intoxicated Driving Resource Center classes and possible outpatient therapy from those classes, an Interlock Device, Suspension of your Driver's License from anywhere between 7 months and 10 years, Suspension of your Registration Priveleges and possible jail time. If you are not satisfied with your current attorney, I would suggest that you immediately contact, consult with and retain an experienced DWI attorney who will be able to advise you more fully and work to protect your rights as DWI case have numerous defenses which you and your current attorney may not have as of yet explored.

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A public defender will usually not have contact with you except in court. Be sure he has all discovery and explains your best course of action. It may be wise for you to get a copy of your discovery and at least get a consultation with a private attorney. Good luck.

Please be advised my answers to questions does not constitute legal advice and you should not rely on it, due to the fact that we have never met, I have not been aprised of the facts in you case nor have I reviewed any documents.


The public defender will talk to you on the day of court. If you want to investigate a defense and communicate with your lawyer, you need to hire a private lawyer. Given the severe consequences of a dwi conviction, at least speak with a private lawyer soon to explore your options.


If the wrong address is your fault ( you didn't tell them a new address not on your license) there is still a problem. Otherwise you need to evaluate the state's proofs on the DWI. The problem with PDs is that they have little time to help you.


A motion can be filed to lift the bench warrant.

There are over 20 ways to beat a DWI.

Why do you want to plead guilty?