You are likely aware of the numerous legal consequences of a DUI conviction in Pennsylvania, such as possible jail time and license suspension depending on how high your BAC is. You may also know you have to pay a traffic fine, an amount which reflects the severity of the incident.
However, that fine is only the beginning of a long list of expenses that may add up with a DUI. Understanding the significant impact on your finances may help you realize the importance of a strong defense in your DUI case and the importance of avoiding future charges.
The traffic fine may not be the only mandatory fee under your circumstances. You may also have to pay the following:
- Towing your vehicle
- Vehicle impoundment
- Evaluation of alcohol abuse
- Restoration of your driver's license
- Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (rehabilitation program)
The cost of some of these can run higher than $1,000. Together, they can be well into the thousands.
After a DUI, your insurance premiums are likely to increase. You may also have to acquire a new vehicle if you got into an accident while driving under the influence. All your time in court, classes, jail or community service also takes away your ability to go to work. You then lose the income you need to pay off all these bills. You may even lose your job and have a hard time securing a new one.
A DUI conviction can have farther-reaching life consequences than just what you face in the judicial system. It is important to remember how it affects other areas of your life as well. You may think that all evidence points against you and it is better just to go with what the prosecution offers you. However, in consideration of all the negative ways a conviction can harm you, it is best to review all your options, especially if this is your first offense.