Staying away from alcohol before getting behind the wheel can do a lot to avoid a DUI conviction and its consequences. Serving time in prison is one possible outcome of DUI charges. However, even if you avoid imprisonment, a DUI conviction can drain your finances through various kinds of costs.
Many people think of the cost of mounting a legal defense when it comes to expenses related to a DUI. As U.S. News and World Report explains, there are many other costs that you may not be aware of.
Rising insurance costs
After a DUI, you could see your insurance premiums rise by as much as 25%. These added costs could last for three years, but some insurers may impose them for a full decade. And if you do not have auto insurance or you lose your coverage, finding an insurer to take you on may prove difficult. Insurers may also turn you down for other policies like life insurance.
Keeping your current job after a DUI or finding new work may prove a challenge. Even if a new employer is open to hiring you, they will want to know that you are staying away from alcohol and may require random urine tests or drug screenings from you. Not all of these tests are free. Some may cost you as high as $100.
Costs of transportation
If you lose your license because of a DUI and you cannot secure a ride from a family member or a friend, you will have to look at other modes of transportation that could cost you money. Bus fare is one possible expense. You also may need to call a rideshare driver to take you to work or to run errands.
Substance abuse classes
After a DUI conviction, a judge might require you to attend a substance abuse class. The cost of these classes may not come cheap. Some people pay anywhere from a $1,000 to $3,000 to attend one. Even if the class costs below $1,000, even a few hundred dollars might seem like a lot to you if you have spent money fighting a DUI charge or on related costs.