The potential loss of life to the driver and others, the legalities, the emotional and life changing trauma associated with a DUI can be catastrophic. Unfortunately, even the most "normal" people continue to take the calculated risk of driving after a few drinks with delusions of their sobriety. If you're a driver who tends to gamble in this situation, are you prepared to cough-up an average of$10,828 in total costs?
All emotions aside: a DUI significantly increases the degree of risk an insurance company takes on in order to underwrite your car insurance policy. After a DUI, you will be categorized as a high-risk operator, and can expect your current premiums to double or more, if your carrier doesn't just simply not renew your policy all together.
MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) reports that the average first time DUI offender can expect his/her car insurance rates to average between $3,600 and $6,600 a year. Depending on how long a DUI citation remains on your state's driving record, these rates are known to continue for up to 7 years, shows just how much this can add up. Furthermore, any additional accidents and tickets (past or future) can easily make the state of affairs exponentially more difficult and triple your insurance costs!
Unless you live in a major city, there really is no replacement for driving. From the perspective of life's real world priorities, being able to drive ranks just below air, water, food, and shelter. Saving this privilege after a DUI though involves more than just costly car insurance rates. Depending on the state you live in, additional costs can include:
Not only will a DUI impact your car insurance rates, but the above estimates fail to account for the endless number of hours it takes to satisfy all the corresponding obligations. Time spent in court, at classes, treatment, restitution services, and even jail time can turn a person's world upside-down. Interestingly, states like Washington make matters even more complex by automatically suspending driving privileges for 90 days upon the first offense.
Furthermore, since a DUI is criminal offense, your driving record will be complemented by a criminal record. If your vocation values the integrity of such a mark (medical, transportation, finance, etc.) finding a new job can become as complicated as finding affordable car insurance.
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