How Much Does a DUI Actually Cost?
What Is the Cost of Being Arrested for a DUI?
Drinking and driving or the act of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a risk nobody should take, not only for the potential legal trouble and DUI consequences you could get into, but also the risk of causing property damage, or even worse, injuring or killing another person. It could also become a huge financial liability.
The financial DUI (driving under the influence) consequences vary depending on your state and city, your age, your BAC level, and other aggravating factors. One DUI attorney estimated the cost of a DUI to be $10,000 for all associated penalties, fees and fines, while the founder of ELDFocus.com predicted the average cost of a DUI would be $10,000 and $30,000, and BACtrack website estimates it costs first-time DUI offenders about $27,000.
DUI Costs: What is the Breakdown?
There are many costs associated with DUI charges. These include:
- Hiring an attorney –if you are facing felony charges or had aggravating factors or other charges along with the DUI (drug crimes, sex crimes, theft crimes, domestic violence, etc.), offenders must hire an attorney ($10,000+) for DUI defense
- Insurance increases –your auto insurance premiums will skyrocket 20% to 25%, you will lose any discounts to all insurance, and the insurance company may not sell you life insurance due to your DUI offenses
- Court fees – there will be bail fees to get you out of jail, conviction costs, legal fees, and court-imposed fines that vary depending on whether it is your first time DUI with less than a .08% blood alcohol level, or if you have been caught multiple times ($400 to 10,000 with prison time)
- Car towing and impound fees –the police will have your vehicle towed and impounded ($100 and $1200 for towing and storage)
DUI offenders may also be ordered to attend substance abuse classes or alcohol education ($1000 to $3000), and the courts may force offenders to install ignition interlock devices ($100 to $150), do random urine testing ($100), pay a community service supervision fee ($100), or wear an ankle monitor ($500/month), all at your own expense. DUI consequences may also include lawsuits, fines and fees if there is injury or death involved in your case.
How a DUI Impacts Your Life
Besides the high financial costs of DUI charges, you may also:
- Lose your license and driving privileges – in many states you lose your driver’s license automatically
- Go to prison –multiple offenders or those who committed drug crimes, or a serious offense may face up to seven years in prison
- Lose family and friends – people you are close with may lose trust in you, may feel weighed down with the burden of driving you everywhere, or may begin to distance themselves from you to avoid being associated with your next offense
- Lost wages – you may lose your job due to being away for jail time or court dates and/or losing your driver’s license, or have difficulties finding a new job with a DUI on your background check
Mental and Emotional Costs of a DUI
The mental and emotional costs of a high or drunk driving DUI arrest may be even worse than the financial toll. Your mental health, disappointment and judgment from others, feelings of guilt, and loss of self-respect may cause mental and emotional distress. You may begin to feel isolated and lost. Lost wages, costs associated with court appearances, potential jail time, and relationship issues cause extra stress. Some courts mandate mental health care along with DUI penalties or jail time to help educate and heal rather than punish offenders.
Warning Signs of Alcohol Use Disorder
If you cannot get through the day without drinking, have developed a high tolerance for alcohol, and cannot stop drinking or cut back without feeling withdrawal symptoms, you may have an alcohol use disorder. If you are ignoring responsibilities and find that drinking or drug use is negatively affecting your life, it may be time for professional help.
Alcohol Rehab at DayBreak
At DayBreak treatment center, we provide a customized medical detox program that will help you safely stop using drugs and alcohol, while providing prescription medication to keep you comfortable, and luxury amenities like movie theater access, spa services, and massage therapy.
Our rehabilitation plans will lead you through detox into a fully tailored rehabilitation plan that may include inpatient rehab, a partial hospitalization program, an intensive outpatient program, dual diagnosis treatments for co occurring disorders, and sober living home arrangements.
If you cannot stop drinking or using drugs of if you have had a DUI conviction for drunk driving and want to quit substance abuse for good, we can provide you with the therapy, recovery tools, groups, and sober community you need to heal the underlying causes of addiction and provide the relapse prevention skills you will need to remain sober once you leave rehab. Call DayBreak today at (844) 695-0083 for more information or see our website for answers to frequently asked questions.