Prop One and the Cost of Drunk Driving
With Austin residents deciding that they no longer wanted Uber/ Lyft to operate inside of the city by voting down prop 1, an early concern of many is the positive influence the ride sharing companies had on the amount of drunk driving happening in the cities. While personal responsibility is the most important part of preventing DWIs, a larger set of options helps make the option of driving drunk less likely. During this time it is important to remember that a DWI is not worth it under any circumstances.
The True Cost of a DWI/DUI
A DWI is one of the most common legal challenges that can befall someone, it is also one of the most expensive. There are many costs associated with it that are straightforward; the legal fees and penalties directly associated with the DUI being the main costs in this category. However there are also several hidden costs associated with a DUI from the time spent in jail and going to court to the potential harm to your current and future career.
Legal Fees and Penalties
Even a first time DUI conviction can cost up to $10,000. The fine for a DUI is actually one of the smaller costs associated with a DUI coming in at 500-1800 dollars. The largest cost associated with a DUI however is the cost of hiring a lawyer for your defense. Lawyers charge an average of 2500-4000 dollars to represent a client in a DUI case. Other non trivial amounts can be charged to get get a car out of impound, the cost of towing, attaching an interlock device to your car and the the cost of administering a blood alcohol test. ]
Common estimates predict that a loss of income totally between $1000 and $4000 associated with a DUI. Also, anyone with a DUI conviction on their record will indeed tell you that after they have paid the legal fees and fines, they have to pay for their mistake for a long time after every time they go to pay their car insurance policy. For just a single DUI insurance can increase from 4500-10000 over the life of the policy.
These costs coupled with the fees, fines and hassle make it important to remember that even though Uber/ Lyft is no longer an option to get home safely, driving drunk is not one either.