The legal drinking age in every U.S. state is 21 and the legal blood alcohol limit is .08 BAC. Yet each year over 1 million drivers are charged with DUI in the United States.
If you are caught violating these laws you will face serious consequences including fines, license suspension, mandatory rehabilitation, and possible jail time, especially if you are a repeat offender.
In most states your DUI arrest and conviction will include other programs whose costs must be covered by the offender.
One third of those arrested or convicted of an impaired driving offense each year are repeat offenders.
The total direct costs of just one DUI charge can easily run you over $10,000.
You can have a blood alcohol content (BAC) reading lower than .08% and still be charged with a DUI if you show signs of impairment. The "legal limit" is the number above which a driver is automatically guilty of driving under the influence.
In a DUI that also involves an accident, property damage or injury, the courts also hold drivers responsible for monetary damages which can run into millions of dollars. Other related financial and non-financial consequences of a DUI are harder to quantify and can have a life changing impact on the offender.
The $10,000 Ride Home
A fine is just the start of what you'll pay for a drunken-driving conviction. Insurance-rate increases, legal bills, alcohol treatment and more can push the cost into 5 figures. Read more.