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A DUI can be a costly mistake

There are many benefits to living in Colorado. Besides the natural beauty all around, Colorado offers freedoms that many other states do not. Nevertheless, these liberties do not mean you are living in a lawless state. In fact, Colorado ranks 11th among the states with the strictest laws and penalties for drunk driving.

If you are convicted of first-offense DUI in this state, you can count on consequences such as paying a fine, license suspension and perhaps community service, depending on the circumstances. What you may not count on are the additional costs of dealing with the aftermath of a drunk driving arrest.

Adding it up

Some tallies show that a first-time DUI conviction can cost you as much as $25,000. This is for a DUI only and does not include aggravating factors -- such as damage from an accident or personal injuries if you had an accident involving another vehicle -- or the loss of income if you miss work or lose your job. The penalties you may face all come with a price tag, including these:

  • Authorities will have your vehicle towed and impounded at your expense.
  • After your arrest, you will likely have to pay for bail.
  • DUI convictions generally carry a fine.
  • The court will assess fees for the time you spend in jail, your sentencing and probation services.
  • You will receive a bill for any blood or breath test police conduct as well as pay for random urine screenings if the court orders.
  • You may have to pay a fee for your community service assignment.
  • If the court orders you to participate in counseling, alcohol treatment or driving classes, you will be responsible for the cost.
  • Ignition interlock is mandatory in Colorado, and you will pay for the installation and monthly fees.

These are only some of the potential costs that come with a DUI conviction. You will likely see a radical spike in your car insurance rates, and you can expect to pay to have your license reinstated after its suspension. There may also be the daily cost of finding alternative transportation to work and other places while you are unable to drive.

While refusing to drive after drinking is the wisest course of action, you will want to seek legal advice if you make a mistake and face a DUI arrest. An attorney may be able to help you avoid some of the heavy consequences of a drunk driving conviction.

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