As states throughout the nation have focused on reducing the amount of motorists who drive under the influence, numerous law enforcement agencies have established severe criminal penalties designed to deter motorists from getting behind the wheel while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs. In Colorado, reducing DUIs and the accidents, injuries, and fatalities caused by impaired drivers has become a top priority. As such, Colorado residents who stand accused of driving under the influence face a number of severe criminal penalties and driver's license repercussions. From possible terms of imprisonment, hefty fines, probation, court ordered alcohol education classes, and driver's license suspensions and revocations to the many negative repercussions that come with having a criminal conviction on one's record, the penalties in place certainly have the potential to wreak havoc on an individual's personal well-being and future. Among these many penalties, however, the expenses and hidden costs that come with a DUI conviction are often considered the most devastating.
Many studies and anti-DUI organizations have focused intently on the costs of a DUI conviction when attempting to deter drivers from getting behind the wheel while intoxicated. According to many, the average costs of a DUI can total as much as $10,000 when all is said and done. These costs arise in a multitude of ways, and entail far more than the fines and court fees handed down by criminal courts.
What expenses can you expect after a DUI conviction in Colorado?
As always, penalties and costs will vary from case to case. Individuals convicted of two or more DUIs, as well as individuals convicted of DUIs involving child passengers, accidents, injuries, and fatalities often face heightened penalties. Regardless of the precise charge, however, all individuals convicted of driving under the influence of drugs of alcohol can expect many hidden expenses and ongoing costs, all of which can create extensive financial burdens.
To help those who stand accused of DUI better understand the costs associated with a conviction, it is best to illustrate what expenses typically arise. For one, court fines and fees can easily extend into the thousands of dollars. Aside from these fees, convicted individuals may also be required to pay the costs associated with performing community service or with probation, depending on the situation. Other costs may include fees associated with court ordered alcohol education classes, which can quickly escalate depending on the length of class one is required to take.
When it comes to driving consequences, a number of hidden fees also exist. Having a DUI conviction on one's driving record, for instance, can result in higher insurance premiums, and expense which can persist for long periods of time. Drivers will also be required to pay various restoration and administrative fees when applying for a new license after a suspension. Ignition interlock devices and the price of paying for public transportation are also additional costs that may arise.
The most potentially devastating financial impact created by a DUI conviction is the fact that convictions have the potential to create limitations and barriers to employment. Prospective employers often view applicants' criminal records when conducting background checks. Although DUI convictions do not always or automatically rule an applicant out of contention, they can be viewed in an unsavory light and can be a large reason as to why one does not get hired for a desired position. This, essentially, can bar convicted individuals from a number of employment and financial opportunities for years to come.
Considering the financial consequences at stake can help those facing DUI allegations better understand the importance of working with seasoned Colorado Springs DUI attorneys from Clawson & Clawson, LLP. Equipped with decades of combined experience and a passion for protecting the rights and futures of clients, our legal team is here to explain the charges and penalties you face and inform you of the ways in which we can fight for you. If you would like to learn more about your case and how our firm can help, contact a Colorado Springs criminal defense attorney today.