How Does NJ Define an Unsafe Lane Change?

Unfortunately, an unsafe lane change in New Jersey can cost you life-long penalties. Read on and reach out to our skilled Bergen County criminal defense attorney today.

What is an unsafe lane change?

If a person obtains their driver’s license, they are trusted to handle their vehicle safely. There are many different actions that can be deemed dangerous driving, like unsafe lane changes. This is a common traffic violation that is witnessed on the roads in the state of New Jersey. It is defined under NJSA 39:4-88 as:

“…a vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practicable entirely with a single lane and shall not be moved from that lane until the driver has ascertained that the movement can be made with safety.”

In addition to this, when a highway is split into many lanes, a vehicle cannot be driven in the left lane except when overtaking or passing another vehicle, while trying to make a left turn, or if the center lane is at the time allotted for traffic moving in the direction the vehicle is proceeding and is signposted to give notice of that allocation.

What are the consequences of an unsafe lane change?

Drivers who disregard the rules of the road, such as engaging in unsafe lane changes, can face certain penalties as a result of their actions. This can include:

  • 2 points on their driver’s license for each offense. If the driver accumulates 6 points or more, they can be instructed to pay a surcharge of $150 each year, with an additional $25 for each point over 6 points, for three years.
  • A fine between $50 and $200 for each offense. This can be doubled if the offense is committed in a safe corridor, construction zone, or 65-mph zone.
  • Potential imprisonment for up to 15 days

It is important to not undervalue the severity of unsafe lane change charges. Oftentimes, points on your license can cause your insurance premiums to skyrocket, especially if you already had points before the offense. This indicates that you will be paying for this offense for years down the road. Also, and rather clearly, if you spend time in jail, you will then have a criminal record that can stay with you for years, or, in some instances, for life.

Contact our Firm

If you are facing criminal charges in New Jersey, you need strong legal defense. Contact the Law Office of Carl Spector for dedicated representation. With over 30 years of experience as both a prosecutor and criminal defense attorney, he offers a unique perspective on how both sides think, and how to best approach each aspect of the case. When your future is on the line, don’t settle for less than the best possible legal representation. Contact an experienced New Jersey criminal defense attorney who will aggressively fight for you. Call today for a free confidential consultation. Let our experience work for you.