New Jersey has historically had trouble with drivers ignoring the long license suspensions that the state has employed to punish people for violations like drunk driving.
It turns out that even if a person is convicted of DWI, they still need to get to work, pick up the kids, keep groceries in the house, and so on. While reforms have been implemented for 2020 to try to reduce the impact of license suspensions, it is still a crime to operate a motor vehicle if your license has been suspended because of a drunk driving conviction.
If you’ve been popped for driving suspended after a DWI before, the matter jumps to a felony-level crime of the fourth degree, under the terms of N.J.S.A. 2C:40-26(a), Operating Motor Vehicle Suspended.