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Breaking down the financial cost of a DUI

How much money is at stake should you receive a DUI conviction? If you have never received so much as a traffic ticket before, the answer could surprise you when you learn firsthand how much a DUI costs. 

Esurance provides information about the expenses you are likely to incur from an arrest for driving under the influence. While the total depends on a number of factors, each of the following types of expenses is likely to contribute significantly to the amount you ultimately pay. 

Towing and impounding  

The police cannot let you drive yourself down to the station or home after your arrest. Instead, law enforcement tows your vehicle to an impound lot, both of which you have to pay for. This can cost roughly $200. 

Penalties and fines 

DUIs come with fines, the cost of which depends on how many drunk driving charges you already have on your record. For your first conviction, expect to have to pay anywhere from about $400 to $1,000. Additionally, that fine can come with a penalty assessment fee that may be as much as three times the amount of your fine. 

Treatment program  

Besides penalties and fines, those charged with a DUI usually have to complete a treatment program that lasts a specific number of hours, such as 30 or 60. Similarly to penalties, program length depends on your BAC level at the time of your arrest. Of course, you will have to pay for the program out of your own pocket. 

Court costs  

DUIs come with mandatory court appearances and paperwork filing, both of which you must pay for. The details of your case determine your overall court costs. 

License reissue fee 

Because you lose your license after getting a DUI, you have to pay to get it back after your suspension. License reissue costs an estimated $125.