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Graduated Driving Laws & NJ Teen Drivers

nj teen driver

New Jersey passed a driving license decal law—also known as graduated driving law (GDL)—in April of 2009. It came into effect in May of 2010 and required drivers under the age of 21, also known as probationary drivers, to have small decals on their license plates to make them easily identifiable.
Studies have estimated that over 1,600 accidents have been prevented by this law and young drivers who failed to comply with the law were issued citations at an increase of 14%.

Rules of the Driver's Probationary Period in New Jersey

The probationary period lasts for two years. If the driver commits moving violations during this period, the punishment could range from loss of license, fines or having to enroll in a mandatory driving program. The restrictions on a probationary license are as follows:

  • Only one passenger under 21-years-old is allowed as a passenger
  • No cell phone use with or without a hands-free device
  • No driving between the hours of 11 P.M. and 5 A.M.
  • There must be decals on the car's license plates

Punishments for Violations

If the probationary driver accumulates 4 or more points on the license, there are fines and they are ordered to attend Probationary Driver School Program (PDP), which comes with a $100 fee just to sign up. The intention of the PDP is to correct the practices that led to the driving violations. It takes up a great deal of time. After completing the program, three points will be removed from the teen's license and a one-year test period will be implemented. The New Jersey Attorney General recently stopped a practice of pleading the more serious charges down to lesser infractions, thereby preventing the need for PDP.
After completing the course, if the driver commits another violation, the teen driver's license is suspended for three months. In addition, the driver will not get a full driver's license for that period of time after the probationary period. If the driver has been convicted of a drug or alcohol-related charge—even if it had nothing to do with driving—the probationary license is suspended for six months.

Hire an Experienced Attorney from the Law Office of Villani & DeLuca

Because these laws are so harsh, with the potential for long-term driving privileges being revoked or delayed, it's important to secure the proper legal representation by calling the experienced lawyers at Villani & DeLuca, P.C. in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey.
Parents who have children just starting out on the road understand the reasons that New Jersey has put these laws in place, but even when the juvenile has made a mistake, that doesn't mean their entire driving future must be compromised or they should have to undergo expensive courses when they may not be guilty. Don't run the risk of a youthful mistake following your child around for an extended period.
Villani & DeLuca has represented people who have been accused of violating the GDLs and assisted them. From Ocean County to Monmouth County and in towns from Brick to Asbury Park to Long Branch to Belmar, the laws affect people all across New Jersey. Contact an attorney at Villani & DeLuca to discuss your case today.

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Villani & DeLuca, P.C. is committed to answering your questions about Divorce & Family Law, Criminal Defense, Personal Injury, and DWI & Traffic Law issues in New Jersey. We offer a Free Consultation and we'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.