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Why fighting a DUI charge can be a cost-effective choice

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2024 | Drunk Driving Charges |

Drivers in California may face drunk driving charges after involvement in collisions or traffic stops. Both those who show diminished driving ability and those who fail chemical tests may end up facing driving under the influence (DUI) charges.

Frequently, those accused of intoxication while driving make the decision to plead guilty. They think that doing so is the most efficient solution. They may also think it is cheaper to plead guilty than to pay to go to court to defend against their DUI charges. When people understand the true financial impact that a DUI charge could have, they may have an easier time seeing the value of defending against those charges.

Why DUI offenses can be costly

When someone pleads guilty to a DUI charge, a judge can sentence them to penalties in accordance with California state law. The possible penalties can include incarceration and license suspension, as well as an obligation to cover court costs.

Paying a $1,000 fine can be financially inconvenient, but incarceration and license suspension can be very costly. Those penalties could potentially lead to someone losing their job. Even after the accused individual gets their license back, the consequences may persist. Often, they have to pay far more for mandatory motor vehicle liability insurance.

According to a review of policy prices, California drivers can expect to pay far more than the average motorist convicted of a DUI offense. Nationwide, policy premium increases average about 65% after a first DUI conviction. In California, however, people can expect to pay 164% more for insurance after their first DUI conviction. The average policy cost for a year without a DUI on record is $1,868, but drivers pay an average of $4,937 after a single conviction.

Pleading guilty to a DUI charge can actually be a very expensive mistake. The combination of those multiple economic risks can add up to be far more than the cost of successfully defending against charges during a criminal trial. Learning about the possible penalties of a DUI conviction may inspire some people to take their case to court. Motorists who successfully fight their charges can avoid criminal penalties and criminal records that can result in consequences for years to come.