A Drunk Driving Arrest Can Be A Huge Financial Burden

Thanks to the work of activists in the 1980s, almost everyone is now aware of the dangers of driving drunk. It can be hard to believe that laws were so lax only 25 years ago, and the stigma surrounding drunk driving is now capable of steering people away from making this dangerous choice. However, there are additional ramifications for those who are caught driving drunk.

In particular, the financial costs can be tremendously high, and those who drive drunk may end up paying for it for the rest of their lives. Here some of the financial ramifications of driving drunk.

A Drunk Driving Arrest Can Be A Huge Financial Burden

Fees

While jail time is not guaranteed for those convicted of drunk driving for the first time, fees are commonly applied. These fees vary greatly, but they are designed to place a financial burden on those caught driving while intoxicated. Punitive in nature, these fees have proven to serve as a substantial deterrent although the fear of jail time often has a greater impact.

Still, those who are considering getting behind the wheel while drunk should ask themselves whether it is worth thousands of dollars along with the other punitive measures that courts and judges will likely impose.

Court costs

A case that goes to trial will be expensive. Even those who use public defenders will likely end up paying certain court fees unrelated to a potential conviction. Those who hire private lawyers who advertise their ability to effectively fight drunken driving convictions will likely end up paying tens of thousands of dollars over time.

For those of multiple convictions, the risk of another connection encourages them to hire lawyers with a reputation for defeating drunk driving charges. Still, the success rate of these lawyers is not much higher than that of public attorneys.

Lost license costs

Increasingly, states are empowering judges to take licenses away from those who have been convicted of driving drunk. Even first-time offenders will likely see their license revoked for six months to a year.

While most jurisdictions will allow offenders to drive to work, those who need to travel anywhere else will have to find a willing friend or pay a taxi driver. Even public transportation options add up over time, and those who lose a license will likely end up spending a considerable amount of money simply to move around.

Probation

As a way of allowing first-time offenders to stay out of jail, many judges will sentence offenders to probation. Probation itself comes with a cost, and having to take time to speak with the probation officer can cost a significant amount of money as well. Further, any action that is deemed to be in violation of the terms of probation will result in the further court costs and the potential for financial sanctions in addition to the possibility of jail time.

Damaged reputation

In many professions, one’s reputation is his or her primary means of building a client base and succeeding. Even those who are not self-employed may have difficulty finding another job if news of their conviction becomes known. Over time, a damaged reputation can be the costliest aspect of a drunk driving conviction, and those who have been convicted of driving drunk may continue to bring in less money throughout the rest of their lives.

Christopher Steven is an avid blogger who is passionate about spreading awareness and encouraging safety for all communities while working with a Tulsa Criminal Defense Attorney Law Firm of Gorospe & Smith in his own community to educate and promote safety and accident prevention.

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