Drinking and driving is done by millions each year, leading to thousands of arrests here in New York. The biggest fear for many when they are initially pulled over or arrested is losing their license. That certainly will happen if they are guilty, but people tend to overlook the financial impact that accompanies these charges. The national average is $15,000, but that number can be much higher here in New York.
Costs for these will vary, but the expenses related to a DUI tend to add up quickly. A partial list includes:
- Fines: These can go up from $300 to $10,000, and there will be additional costs for court.
- Impound: You certainly cannot leave it there (cost is $20 per day), but getting a car out of the impound lot is $185.
- Probation: There is a $30 administrative fee per month.
- License reinstatement: This will cost $125 once the suspension is over.
- Driver responsibility assessment: The DMV charges $750 for this on top of reinstatement fees.
- Insurance: Automotive insurance rates often skyrocket by $1000 or more per year if there is a family member with a DUI. Health insurance rates may go up too.
- Classes: The judge often requires special classes as part of the penalty, and they can add up — the NYS Drinking Driver Program class for conditional reinstatement costs at least $200.
- Treatment: Those required to go through treatment could pay thousands of dollars depending on the treatment program and how long it lasts.
- Ignition interlock device: The court may require an IID to be installed in the car as a condition for reinstating the driver’s license. It can cost up to $125 per month per car.
- Lost income: Drivers can lose their job if they drive for work. They may also miss work because they need to honor various obligations.
Paying the attorney is money well-spent
It is often smart to hire an experienced attorney who handles DUIs. These legal professionals will cost money, but their work can reduce fines and penalties and otherwise minimize the impact in other ways for years to come.