Criminal Law

The Far-Reaching Impact of DUIs

The Far-Reaching Impact of DUIs – Chris Adams of Adams & Bischoff, LLC – https://adamsbischoff.com/

Driving under the influence continues to happen often across the United States. In most DUI cases, alcohol is the impairing substance. The overconsumption of alcohol is extremely dangerous because a person’s physical and/or mental capabilities are significantly impaired. Poor muscle coordination, slurred speech, loss of judgment, and lack of self-control are a few of the effects of alcohol concentration.

This can take a dramatic toll while behind the wheel of a vehicle because a driver will most likely not have full control of visual functions, muscle coordination, and mental concentration. The inability to perform two tasks simultaneously (divided attention) is also an effect of drinking an excessive amount of alcohol.

Yet despite this common knowledge, the real costs of a DUI are not understood by many. Avoiding a DUI conviction can save you thousands of dollars in the long run, as well as the lives of others on the road.

The Impact of Driving Under the Influence

Driving while under the influence is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents. Nearly 30 people in America die every day due to drunk driving crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Being impaired by drugs or alcohol while behind the wheel is a crime in all 50 states as well as in the District of Columbia. In these jurisdictions, it is illegal to drive with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher. However, a sobriety test does not have to be given for a DUI conviction due to the visible impairment clues that the officer may notice. Violating these safety road laws can lead to a number of criminal charges, fees, and fatal or near-fatal traffic crashes.

According to James Owens, the Deputy Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the lowest percentage of alcohol-impaired driving crashes was last reported in 1982. Each year, impaired driving is the cause of nearly one-third of all deaths on the roads. Each crash, death, and injury are completely preventable. Using drugs and alcohol isn’t worth being arrested, charged, or even worse – causing the injury or death of an innocent victim.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 10,000 people in the US die in alcohol-related crashes each year and hundreds of thousands more are left injured.

How Much Does a DUI Conviction Typically Cost?

A DUI conviction has the potential to put a hole in your pocket even if a car accident did not occur. Several years of probation, DUI classes, license suspension, community service, and/or jail time may occur as a result of drinking while driving. A first-time offense can cost up to $10,000 in fines and legal fees. After being convicted of criminal charges, a person’s car insurance rates will surge dramatically due to the increase in premium costs. In some cases, their car insurance has the possibility of doubling the very next day.

Increased Car Insurance

After a DUI, a person’s insurance company, driving record, and location are a few factors that will determine how much their insurance will go up and how long it will last. There is also a chance that the insurance company may decide to terminate the driver’s policy.

If a person’s license was suspended as a result of a DUI, any insurance company has the ability to cancel their plan. Having an insurance policy canceled can make it extremely difficult for the individual to find another insurance company to cover them. This may result in being placed in the high-risk pool with a higher premium.

What are Alcohol Exclusion Laws?

The Uniform Accident and Sickness Policy Provision Law (UPPL) that 37 States follow includes alcohol exclusion laws that were passed to discourage drivers to not drink and drive. These alcohol exclusion laws allow insurance companies to deny alcohol-related medical claims. So, if you were injured while driving drunk, insurance companies are allowed to refuse to pay for your injuries. This means that all of your medical services will be out of pocket.

How Much Does a DUI Attorney Cost?

After a conviction of a DUI, it may be crucial to work with an attorney. However, the price of a DUI lawyer varies depending on a number of factors. Court and attorney fees could cost anywhere between $1,000 to $5,000.

Can I Get My Car Back After a DUI?

After a DUI conviction, a person will most likely be arrested and sent to jail. About 1.5 million people are arrested for driving under the influence each year, according to the Insurance Information Institute. If you’re arrested after driving while under the influence, you will not be able to drive your car. As a result, your car will most likely be towed or taken to the impound lot.

If impounded, your car may stay at the lot for at least 5 days depending on the severity of the case and the jurisdiction in which you were arrested. Subsequent DUIs may result in 90-day impoundments. The costly fees of towing or impounding your vehicle can range anywhere between $100 and $1,000 – excluding administrative fees. If you cannot afford to pay these fees, your car will be auctioned off.

Alcoholism Treatment Programs

Drug education and rehabilitation are required for many DUI convictions. The costs of these alcoholism treatment programs vary and can range from hundreds to even thousands of dollars a day. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, 17.6 million people in the United States have an alcohol abuse or dependence issue.

Ways to Prevent a DUI Conviction

The only sure way to avoid getting a DUI conviction is to drive sober. However, even one drink can increase for BAC over the legal limit. Many individuals think they can drink and drive so long as they obey the rules of the road. But even a busted taillight or erratic braking can be cause for a pullover.

Even though breathalyzers are not always accurate and reliable, you can play it safe by always having a personal alcohol breath tester. If you choose to use a personal breathalyzer, it can be measured within 30 to 70 minutes after drinking for an accurate result. There are a few factors that can impact BAC results:

●     Number of drinks consumed

●     How quickly you consumed the drinks

●     The size of the drinks

●     Body weight

●     Water composition

●     Sex

●     Hormone levels

●     Fat and muscle composition

●     Prescription drugs

●     Food in the stomach

●     Alcohol tolerance

Strategies to Avoid DUI Convictions

There are several strategies that can help with the prevention of DUIs. If you choose to drink, make smart choices and don’t drive. Reduce drunk-driving deaths and motor vehicle accidents by assigning a designated driver or by calling a ride-hailing servicer, such as an Uber or Lyft, to your destination. Medical professionals also recommend never mixing alcohol with other prescription drugs, because it may lead to an intense and prolonged impairment.

It is imperative to follow responsible behavior by driving sensibly and safely. Every driver should always be 100% sober while driving to avoid any dangerous situations from happening to drivers, passengers, and others on the road. Drunk driving is a major concern in the United States and following these simple instructions can save someone’s life. Impaired-driving prevention starts with you.


The Far-Reaching Impact of DUIs – Chris Adams of Adams & Bischoff, LLC – https://adamsbischoff.com/

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