Following a drunk driving conviction, or DUI, it’s probably assumed that there will be some type of fine or fee and that you may temporarily lose driving privileges. Beyond that, the repercussions may be unknown. In reality, a drunk driving conviction usually brings with it a list of expenses and additional requirements and provisions.
Increased auto insurance rates
In most cases, you will be required to obtain an SR-22 policy following a drunk driving conviction. This is a certificate that proves that you carry liability insurance. While the cost of the actual SR-22 certificate is minimal, it will most likely raise your insurance rates overall. An SR-22 is a red flag to most insurance companies and will likely classify you as a high-risk driver. In addition, not all insurance companies will continue to insure you after a DUI so your options may be limited.
Ignition interlock device
All states have laws supporting or requiring the use of an ignition interlock device following a drunk driving conviction. Over half of states require an ignition interlock device for all first-time DUI offenses. Most other states require them for second and consecutive offenses and for extreme first offenses. Costs associated with the ignition interlock device could include a monthly lease fee, installation and de-installation costs and monthly maintenance fees. In addition, you may be charged if your device goes into a lockout status due to not servicing it in time or from providing too many failed breath samples.
In most states, impaired driving is a criminal offense that will probably require you to go to court. While it is possible to do it alone, you will probably want to hire an attorney that specializes in DUI to help you through the process. The DUI process can be complicated and a skilled attorney will help to make sure you complete all requirements needed to regain your full license as quick as possible. In addition, an attorney can help identify if there are any alternate measures that may be an option, such as a prolonged period with an ignition interlock device in exchange for license suspension.
The process to regain your license after a drunk driving incident can be complicated and expensive. Unfortunately, most people are unaware of all the possible repercussions that could follow when they make the decision to drink and drive. By bringing awareness to the hidden dangers, seemingly never-ending fees and complicated steps required following a DUI, hopefully more people will choose to separate drinking from driving. The cost of a taxi or an Uber ride is minuscule when looking at what a DUI could cost.
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