Maybe it hit you while police were taking your fingerprints that you could have caused an accident that night. Driving after drinking is dangerous – everybody knows that – but you didn’t think you had that much to drink. Maybe you’d driven home before in worse condition and made it home without incident.
No one got hurt, but now you may feel like everything is on hold while you wait for your trial date. After that, your future is uncertain. Will you go to jail? Will you lose your job? Where will you get the money to pay for this?
A DUI can be very expensive
f a judge convicts you, you can expect to shell out a good bit of cash, even if it is your first offense. Some of the costs of a DUI conviction include:
- Court costs
- Towing charges
- Increased insurance
- Alcohol treatment fee
In addition, you may be required to forfeit your driver’s license, which may leave you begging for rides or paying for a taxi, rideshare or public transportation.
Your job after a DUI
A DUI may also affect your employment. If you must miss work for court dates or alcohol treatment obligations, or if transportation issues frequently make you late, your employer may lose patience. Depending on your line of work – for example, if you drive for a living – you may lose your job altogether if your license is suspended. Additionally, based on the circumstances surrounding your arrest, a conviction may disqualify you from consideration for many jobs in the future.
The cost to your reputation
Because of the high rate of injuries and fatalities associated with drunk drivers, law enforcement and safety advocates have worked hard to attach a stigma to DUI arrests. Local papers in Michigan often publish the names of those convicted of drunk driving and create scandals when public officials or celebrities drive drunk.
You can probably see that this stigma as a good thing if it saves lives by deterring people from driving after they party. However, your reputation will be one more thing you will have to consider as you prepare for your next step in the legal process.
Knowing what’s at stake
There will be few aspects of your life that a DUI conviction will not affect. If this is not your first offense, if your BAC was considerably higher than the legal limit, or if you were also involved in an accident, your situation has the potential to produce lifelong consequences.
Therefore, having aggressive legal representation on your side from the very beginning is vital. Your lawyer will investigate every moment of your arrest, from the suspicion that prompted police to pull you over to the administration and validity of your blood alcohol test. In this way, your attorney will protect your rights and fight for the best possible outcome for your situation.