They say that everything has a price and that nothing in life is free. Those axioms are certainly true when it comes to a DUI conviction. According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, a conviction for drunken driving can cost a person $10,000 or more.
One of the biggest costs associated with a DUI isn’t levied by the state. Instead, it’s from auto insurance companies that will often dramatically raise premiums or even drop a driver’s coverage after a DUI, forcing the person to look for companies that specialize in higher risk customers. The state estimates that the hike in insurance amounts to $3,000 over five years.
That’s only the start of the painful financial costs, however. Detoxification will set a person back $455. Having their vehicle towed after the arrest? Another $143 (add $39 for a car storage fee). Jail fees run from $10 to $50, while the alcohol treatment evaluation is priced at $200. Alcohol education classes cost between $150 and $1,000, with the state estimating that the average driver spends about $575 on the required classes.
Chemical testing fees average $90, while bail usually sets a person back $150. A fine for a first conviction averages $800, while probation supervision costs about $600, though it can run up to $1,200.
And then there’s the ignition interlock rental: it can go from $480 up to $1,460, with the average first-time offender paying $970.
Many Denver residents prefer to fight to preserve their driving privileges and fight to minimize the potential financial impact of a DUI with the assistance of an experienced attorney.
Source: Colorado Department of Transportation, “Cost of a DUI,” July 2014