Drunken driving is a serious offense, but that doesn’t stop it from being the most commonplace crime in America. The year 2007 is the last year for which the statistics related to DUI’s are available. According to the California Department of Alcohol and Drug programs, in 2006, the number of people arrested for a DUI is around 1.46 million. There were 46,642 highway deaths in 2006, out of which 17,602 were alcohol-related. An estimated $51 billion was spent on DUI’s in 2006 alone. A conservative estimate provided by the California Department of Alcohol and Drug programs, pegs the cost of a first time DUI offense at approximately $6,600.
Here is the breakdown provided:
* Fines and Penalties – $1000
* Towing and Impound Fee – $215
* DUI Treatment Program – $626
* Court Cost – $800
* Insurance Increase – $500-1,500
* Attorney Fees – $2,500
Total Approximate Cost: – $6,641
(Source: http://www.adp.cahwnet.gov- The California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs)
This is a very conservative estimate however. Another estimate provided by the Insurance Information Network of California estimates that a DUI today could cost you a cool $10,000 dollars at the very least. Signing a Driver’s License inCalifornia means that you are providing your implied consent to a breath, blood, or urine test if arrested for DUI. Your refusal to do so will result in the immediate suspension of your driver’s license and will also result in your being taken into police custody. Here is how the breakdown of the Insurance
Information Network of California looks:
* First things first, the ball starts rolling with the towing and impounding of your car. You will also be charged for the time the authorities spend watching your car. So your meter starts running from $250 for this process.
*Next you will need to post bail. This amount can be a few hundred dollars, or it can be a few thousand. If you do not have the cash on you, you will be required to enlist the services of a bail bondsman. The typical bondsman fee is 10% so that means you will have to pay 500 dollars upfront for release on a $5000 bond.
* If this conviction happens to be your first, you will be charged as much as $2,000 in fees, fines, costs and assessments when all is said and done.
*California law requires that 96 hours of jail time be served when convicted of a DUI and having a prior DUI conviction in the previous 10 years. 48 of these must be served at a stretch. This will result in loss of pay from your missing work.
*A DUI conviction will result in a large increase in your insurance, and you might not get a discount for up to 10 years.
In addition to these costs, there are the attorney costs that you will have to pay. Any experienced attorney will charge anywhere from $2,000-$5,000 and may charge additional fees for the trial. You will be required to attend an Alcohol Education Class, which costs approximately $500 for typical first offender program. And finally you have to pay the DMV $125 for the re-issue of your license. These are the approximate costs that are associated with getting a DUI in the state of California.
About Guest Post Author:
Christopher J. McCann is a Newport Beach DUI Attorney. McCann is a practicing criminal defense lawyer Long Beach at the law offices of Christopher J. McCann who was recently awarded his 6th SuperLawyers Magazine “Rising Star” award. You can follow Chris tweets at @cjm_law_firm or posts at Orange County DUI Lawyers Blog
http://www.adp.cahwnet.gov : The California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs.
http://www.iinc.org: The Insurance Information Network of California.