How much does a DUI Cost?
When you get a DUI there are a lot of hidden costs that you wouldn’t anticipate. Sure, you know your car insurance will go up and you know you will need to hire an attorney, but what else can you expect? While we can’t provide you an exact cost of a DUI, we can give you a few guidelines of things you can expect and around how much they can cost.
Your first cost associated with a DUI is your bond. This varies a lot from case to case, but you can expect somewhere between $50-$1,000 to bond out of jail for your first DUI.
Fines and fees
Every DUI will come with fines and fees. This can vary depending on what county you are in, as well as what your charge is. A misdemeanor DUI will have a lower fine and fees than a felony DUI. With a misdemeanor DUI, it will most likely be around a $300 fine and a $150 victims compensation fee.
A felony DUI will also include fines and fees, but the amounts will be much higher. This is almost impossible to predict because it will vary more significantly from county to county and can even vary depending on who your prosecutor is within a county. Regardless of the amount, you will always have fines and fees associated with your case.
The next expense is court costs. You will always have to pay court costs. If your case is dismissed, court costs are typically waived. However, even a dismissal can occasionally bring court costs.
Court costs will vary depending on how many court settings you have had, what type of case you had, what county you are in, etc. It would be rare to have court costs under $1,000, so you can almost guarantee a 4 figure amount. Many people confuse the fines and fees with court costs, but these are separate costs.
Unlike with most other costs, these are not pre-agreed to amounts set by a prosecutor. Court costs are overseen by the court clerk, and are not included in the plea deal. Only the court clerk can tell you how much your court costs will be, and it can change every time you go to court.
DA Supervision fees
If you plead on a case that requires supervision, which is most misdemeanor DUI’s and some felony DUI’s, you will have to pay DA supervision fees. This amount can vary, but is around $50 per month. You have to pay this amount even if you finish all of your requirements ahead of time.
This means that if you plea to an 18 month deferred sentence, you will have to pay an additional $900 to the DA’s office on top of your other fees. Even if you finish all of your classes and pay off all of your fees in 3 months, you will still have to pay that full $900 since you are technically on probation for the full 18 months.
Drug and Alcohol Assessment
When you plead on a DUI, you are required by state law to take a drug and alcohol assessment, a victims impact panel, and attend a DUI school. Even though these are required courses, you are responsible for the cost of the course. Many of these costs are set by the state. However, there is some variation depending on where you attend and when you received your DUI.
If you are getting a drug and alcohol assessment for court it will cost approximately $100. However, if you have had your license suspended based on a DUI, you may be required to get a drug and alcohol assessment for that. A drug and alcohol assessment for getting your license reinstated will cost approximately $160.
Victims Impact Panel
A victims impact panel (VIP) is another of the required courses for a DUI. A VIP is around $75 to attend. If you lose your certificate, you will have to get a replacement to show the court, which can cost another $25. It is also important to note that most counties will not accept an online VIP.
A DUI school, also referred to as ADSAC, is another statutory requirement. The cost of the DUI school you take will vary depending on whether you have to take the 10 hour course or the 24 hour course. The 10 hour course will cost approximately $150, while the 24 hour course will cost approximately $360. You will not get to choose which course you would like to take. It is determined by your drug and alcohol assessment or may be set according to your plea deal.
If you’ve been charged with a DUI, you need to hire an attorney. The cost of an attorney can vary greatly depending on location, experience, and type of case. The best thing you can do is talk to an attorney (or several) to get a sense of whether they are a good fit for you.
A hidden cost most people don’t expect is the cost of transportation. Once you get a DUI, your license is often suspended. During that time, you still have obligations that require you to get from a to b. This can mean anything from an uber to the city bus. Regardless of what works best for you, this alternate form of transportation is an expense most people don’t anticipate.
In order to get your license reinstated, along with other requirements, you will have to pay a DPS fee. This fee will vary depending on the reason for your suspension. For example, if your license was suspended because you refused to take the State’s breath/blood test, the fee is $315. However, if your license was suspended due to a failure to appear at court, the fee’s are approximately $100.
IDAP Program Costs
If you choose to take part in the IDAP program, which will help either maintain your driving rights or get your driving rights back, you will have fees associated with that as well. The IDAP program costs $275 in total fees, but you will also have fees associated with monitoring your breathalyzer. These fees will vary depending on breathalyzer type, company monitoring, as well as how long you must have the breathalyzer on your vehicle.
The Bottom Line
While DUI costs vary significantly from case to case, you can guarantee it will cost you thousands of dollars. This is not only from the obvious costs, such as court costs and attorney’s fees, but also the hidden costs of classes and transportation. If you have been charged with a DUI, and want to know what your options are, contact us for a free case evaluation.