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A person making an unsafe lane change while driving a car during sunset, viewed from the backseat, showing one hand on the steering wheel and a GPS navigation screen lit up.

What Are the Consequences of Unsafe Lane Changes in New Jersey?

Unsafe lane change offenses are more severe than people may think. If you were charged with one and are now facing the consequences, you will need to retain the services of a skilled New Jersey criminal defense attorney today.

What is an unsafe lane change in New Jersey?

New Jersey drivers must operate their vehicles safely and obey all rules of the road. One of the most typical road rules is safe lane changes. According to New Jersey statute number 39:4-88:

  • “…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.”

Additionally, when a highway has several lanes, a vehicle is not permitted to drive in the left lane unless they are passing another car or preparing to make a left turn. If you would like to learn more about unsafe lane changes, do not wait to reach out to our experienced New Jersey criminal defense attorneys.

What are the penalties for an unsafe lane change?

Engaging in unsafe lane changes can result in serious penalties. The consequences can result in any of the following:

  • 2 points on their driver’s license for each offense. If the driver collects 6 points or more, they can be required 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 performed in a safe corridor, construction zone, or 65-mph zone.
  • Possible imprisonment for up to 15 days

Contrary to popular belief, an unsafe lane change offense is severe. In most cases, points on your license can result in your insurance premiums to quickly rise, especially if you already had points prior to the offense. This insinuates that you will be paying for this charge for many years down the road. Furthermore, if you spend time in jail, you will have a criminal record that can follow you for years and even forever. There is nothing more devastating than a record stating you went to jail. If you already have a certain number of points on your license, a 2-point violation might be all you need to end up with a license suspension. It is no surprise that these penalties can be any motorists’ worst nightmare.


Kevin T. Conway is an experienced Bergen County criminal attorney handling DUI, DWI, traffic violations, violent crimes, sex crimes, illegal gun possession, shoplifting, and juvenile crimes. Attorney Conway is also experienced in commercial law matters, zoning law, and estate planning. If you need an aggressive criminal lawyer, contact The Law Office of Kevin T. Conway for a free consultation.

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