Examining the Costs of a DUI

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If a driver receives a DUI charge, the total costs may exceed several thousand dollars. In Arizona, the legal system often requires those convicted of this to pay a large fine, a public fund safety fee, an ignition interlock device, and a license reinstatement fee. And there are fees if the police officer impounds your vehicle.

the additional cost of a dui

What are some of the Fines?

The base court fine and surcharges could be almost $2000 and a DUI assessment of another $250. The fees do not stop there. The court imposes other mandatory fees.  There is the Arizona Department of Public Safety Equipment fund assessment, which is up to $1250 and the Prison assessment which is also up to $1250.  These fees are allocated to multiple types of government projects meant to increase the safety of the roads, reduce potholes, improve the quality of traffic signs, and oversee construction projects.

What are Additional Costs to Consider?

A court is required to also charge for the cost of going to jail.  The city recuperates the cost of sending you to jail, since the city bears the ultimate cost of your imprisonment.  That is one cost, the court can waive, in whole or in part.

Towing the Vehicle

Once a police officer administers a sobriety test, they can utilize a breathalyzer, and this device will quickly evaluate the blood alcohol level of the motorist. If the motorist is intoxicated, the police officer may impound their vehicle. While the city imposes a standardized cost for the towing company and storage fees, one can be looking at least a few hundred dollars to get your vehicle out of impound. The impound lot charges per day for storage and, before the local company releases the vehicle, the driver must pay the total costs of these services.

Estimating the Costs of Necessary Classes

A DUI conviction will require mandatory alcohol or drug classes and the court will order you to pay for and attend them.  The idea is that the classes will teach you about the errors of drinking and driving.  You will be required to go for a screening and the screener will determine how many classes you must attend to satisfy the court. So when a motorist estimates the cost of a DUI in Arizona, they should need to consider the prices of the classes that may be required for them to recover their license. The screening, education and treatment can cost several hundred dollars, depending on the number of hours imposed.  The minimum number of hours for the education and treatment in Arizona starts at 16 hours and can go up to 36 hours, at a State certified facility.

Installing an Ignition Interlock Device

The Arizona Motor Vehicle Department will also require the motorist to have an ignition interlock device installed. The court may also order an ignition interlock device in order to allow you to reduce the jail time. This product contains an innovative breathalyzer that will quickly evaluate the blood alcohol level of the driver before they are able to start their vehicle and while they are driving the vehicle. If there is any alcohol detected, the product will temporarily deactivate ignition. Several reports have suggested that the products may reduce the risk of accidents by more than 23%.

The driver must pay for the ignition interlock device and, usually, the product will cost approximately $900 for the required year obligation.

Reinstating Your Driver’s License

The Motor Vehicle Department may suspend  or even revoke a driver’s license, depending on the DUI offense.  The motorist must pay a reinstatement before the license is returned.  If the license is revoked, the driver must complete an investigation packet and obtain proof of Future Financial Responsibility, also known as a SR-22, which will increase your insurance rates. Fortunately, the Arizona Department of Transportation has created a website that can help you to reinstate your driver’s license online. License Revocation and Suspension | ADOT (azdot.gov)

Increasing the Costs of Car Insurance

Once there is a DUI conviction on the driver’s record, the driver’s insurance company may find it and could quickly raise the costs for auto insurance, or may even drop the customer’s insurance coverage altogether. If the driver keeps the insurance plan, the business could increase their annual costs by more than $1,000. Typically, the insurance company will augment the monthly costs for at least four years.

Contacting an Experienced Attorney and Evaluating the Costs of the Services

A DUI Criminal Defense attorney can fight the DUI charges.  The attorney will evaluate the police investigation, interview witnesses, review the officer body cameras and the blood alcohol test to fight the case. When you are ready to schedule a free consultation, you should call Robert A. Dodell, Attorney at Law, at 480-860-4321, or submit a request via our contact form that is located on our website.

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