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The financial cost of a DUI

When arrested for driving under the influence, most people’s concerns fall to the possibility of jail time. While those convicted of drunk driving may face a jail sentence, their arrests may also take a substantial toll on their pocketbooks. In addition to fines, such charges may carry a range of other expenses.

Thus, it behooves drivers to understand the potential financial costs of a DUI arrest.

Fines and fees

According to the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, drunk driving convictions in the state carry fines. The fines people may have to pay increase based on factors such as their previous arrest records. For a first-time offense, the court may order drivers to pay between $250 and $400; though, this may increase to up to $1,000 for a third offense.

Drivers convicted of DUI must also pay certain fees. These include $100 for the Motor Vehicle Commission restoration, $75 for the Safe and Secure Community Program, and $50 for the Violent Crimes Compensation Fund.

Insurance and surcharges

DUI convictions may also see drivers’ insurance expenses increase. For example, their carriers may raise their monthly premium due to their arrests. Additionally, people convicted of DUI must pay a $1,000 automobile insurance surcharge for a period of three years. They must also deposit a $100 surcharge in the Drunk Driving Enforcement Fund.

Intoxicated Driver Resource Center

According to the New Jersey Department of Human Services, if convicted of alcohol-related offenses in the state, those with New Jersey driver’s licenses must meet the Intoxicated Driving and Intoxicated Driver Resource Centers programs’ requirements. This may involve detainment, education and screening. Program participants bear the financial responsibility for the fees associated with these programs. Failure to pay could result in a suspension of their driving privileges, a jail sentence of up to two days or both.



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