If you have been arrested for driving under the influence, you have probably realized that the costs of a DUI arrest are great, both emotionally and financially. Emotionally, there is the shame of being arrested, of having to go to court, of dealing with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), and of telling your family, maybe even your boss. While the emotional and psychological costs of a DUI arrest and possible conviction are unique to every individual and situation, it is also unique where money is concerned. Not everyone is in the same boat.
Even if you decide not to fight the charges against you, your finances will likely still take a major hit. The initial costs are the fines, penalties and surcharges. If it is required of you, it will also cost money to do the sheriff’s work program. You may also have to pay a fee to choose, within certain limits, when you serve your jail time so that it is the least disruptive to your life. There is also a program fee for enrollment in the alcohol classes and you will have to pay the DMV reinstatement fee to reinstate your driver’s license.
Financial expenses do not stop there. You will likely have to pay for an ignition interlock monitoring device which is basically a breathalyzer that is put in your car for a period of time. Unless it shows that your blood alcohol content (BAC) is below a certain level, the car will not start. Once the vehicle is running, you have to retest randomly.
Then there is a “hard suspension” which is the time when you cannot legally drive. If you are like most people, you will probably still need to get around, whether it is to and from work, your children’s school, the grocery store, and so on. You will not have to pay for gas, but public transportation is rarely free. If your license is ultimately suspended by the DMV, you can apply for a temporary driver’s license, but there are fees to pay there too. If you continue to drive while your license is suspended, you may be subject to additional criminal charges and all the costs involved.