When people are charged with DUI for the first time, they are generally concerned about whether they will have to go to jail. While incarceration is a legitimate concern in any criminal case, few people realize that the financial consequences of their DUI could be even more serious.
Particularly considering, in some circumstances, these consequences might linger for years.
When you’ve been charged with a DUI, money is likely to be at the top of your mind. Court fees, legal fines, towing and storage fees, and application fees are just a few of the expenditures associated with drunk driving.
The hiring of a lawyer is one of these fees if you want to dispute your charges. While you have the option of fighting the charges on your own, it is always preferable to have an experienced DUI lawyer prepare your case.
You might be concerned about the cost of a DUI lawyer. However, the cost of a DUI attorney pales in comparison to the value of your reputation, livelihood, and freedom.
What Is A DUI?
Under Florida Statute 316.193, drinking and driving is a criminal violation punishable by a DUI (driving under the influence). In Florida, the legal blood alcohol level is.08, and anyone caught driving above this limit will be punished with a DUI.
DUI is also an administrative offense that, according to Florida Statute 322.2616, will result in your driver’s license being suspended automatically.
You will have ten days to file an appeal with the DMV in order to keep your driver’s license. Fines, jail time, community service, and court-ordered substance abuse counseling are all possible consequences of a DUI.
The severity of the punishment will be determined by whether the DUI charges are misdemeanors or felonies.
The number of previous DUI convictions a defendant has will determine the minimum and maximum punishments. Unless a serious injury has occurred, first and second DUIs are misdemeanors, whereas third and fourth DUIs are felonies with heavier punishments.
Even if their blood alcohol content (BAC) is only.02, underage drinkers might be prosecuted for driving under the influence. Due to their increased level of responsibility on the road, commercial drivers can also be penalized if they have a BAC of.04.
Large truck drivers are heavily controlled, and a first-time DUI conviction can result in their CDL being revoked for life.
Is Hiring a DUI Attorney Worth the Money?
Although hiring a DUI attorney isn’t inexpensive, the expense of a DUI conviction might far outweigh this sum. A first-time DUI conviction can result in fines of up to $2,000, a second conviction can result in fines of up to $4000, and a third or fourth offense can result in fines of up to $2,000.
When determining whether or not to engage a DUI attorney, you should consider more than just the cost.
If this isn’t your first conviction, your chances of going to jail skyrocket.
DUI convictions frequently result in months of incarceration. Your greatest chance of preventing this is to hire a lawyer.
If you are convicted, a DUI defense attorney will guide you through the sentencing process, reminding you of the proper things to say and do along the way. Without the assistance of an attorney, even the simplest blunder or misspoken remark can land you in jail, with hefty fines to pay.
While a lawyer won’t be able to prevent all of the ramifications of a DUI, they can help you minimize the harm to your reputation, career, and criminal record.
What Does A DUI Attorney Cost?
Lawyers are not inexpensive. This is common knowledge. When you know how much one can cost, you’ll have a better notion of what to expect when you hire one.
The cost of a DUI lawyer varies. You shouldn’t expect every lawyer you meet with to give you a set fee. Their price structure will be influenced by their experience, reputation, and amount of resources.
Also, the sort of offense for which you have been charged has an impact on the cost. Misdemeanors require less time and resources than felonies, which is reflected in the cost of a DUI lawyer.
DUI charges can also be brought against those who are under the influence of illegal or prescription medications. Although a DUI charge is the same as drinking and driving, offenders may face an extra charge of drug possession or usage.
A rough estimate of the cost you should expect if you engage an attorney is outlined below.
Cost of a DUI Attorney for a First Offense (Estimated)
- $1,500 to $2000 — inexperienced attorneys with little to no experience with drunk driving cases.
- $2,500 to $3,500 – Competent attorneys with a shaky reputation and some prior experience defending DUI charges.
- $4,000 to $7,500 — Experienced DUI attorneys with a strong reputation and more DUI experience than their colleagues.
Cost of a Felony DUI Attorney (Estimated)
• Between $2,000 and $3,000
• Between $3,500 and $4,500
• Between $5,000 and $10,000
Please arrange a free consultation to see how much The Law Place DUI attorneys charge for their services. The average DUI lawyer fee in Colorado is $3,650, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.
When you consider that first-time DUIs in Colorado cost an average of $13,530 when all fees are added up, it’s not a bad deal.
The following are the costs of a typical DUI:
The average cost of a DUI lawyer is $3,650. (depends on many factors, varies widely)
- An increase in insurance rates of roughly $3,600
- $2,172 for Ignition Interlock Device Rental and Service
- $1,000 for a drug and alcohol abuse treatment program
- $900 in Probation Fees
- First-time offenders face fines ranging from $600 to $1,000.
- Detoxification in Jail – $303
- $200 for a Probationary Drug and Alcohol Evaluation
- $175 for vehicle towing
- $163 for the Victim Assistance Fund
- Renewing your driver’s license – $95
- $90 for the Law Enforcement Assistance Fund
- Fee for supervising community service – $60
- $50 for the Victim Impact Panel Program
- Car Impound or Storage Fees – $49.20 per day
- Victim Compensation Fund – $29
- Court Fees – $26
- Restricted License – $26
- Brain Injury Fund Fee – $20
- Instruction Permit – $16.80
- Rural Alcohol and Substance Abuse Fund – $5
If you’re going to roll the dice and deal with the repercussions without the support of an experienced lawyer, it’s not exactly an apples-to-apples comparison.
Knowing what to do after a DUI arrest can mean the difference between your license remaining valid or being automatically suspended.
How Can DUI Attorneys Get You Out of a DUI?
The prosecution presents case evidence against the defendant in any criminal trial. A good DUI lawyer will handle the precise forms of evidence presented by a drunk driving allegation and deconstruct the prosecution’s case in a systematic manner.
A DUI lawyer may challenge the following categories of evidence:
- Why was the traffic stop sign made?
- The results of any field sobriety tests performed by the officer
- Blood alcohol tests
- Breathalyzer exams
- Recorded observations made by police
- Probable cause to search the vehicle
- Arrest and booking procedure
Consider if you will be able to fight specific pieces of evidence against you if you are debating whether the expense of a DUI lawyer is worth the money.
Do you know how to read a poor police report? What about the right way to conduct a traffic stop? A good lawyer will have the experience and acute eye required to make these decisions and defend them in court.
What Factors Affect the Cost of a DUI Attorney?
Almost all DUI attorneys work on an hourly basis. The longer they work on your case, the more money it will cost. There are three key elements that influence how much you pay:
- The degree of difficulty in your case. Some DUI instances are easy to understand.
Lawyers might expect a high likelihood of reaching a deal or winning your case if your blood alcohol content (BAC) was near to the legal limit and you have no prior criminal record. Other cases are more complicated: there may be additional charges besides DUI, someone was wounded, or you have previous convictions.
- Attorneys are well aware that they will have to fight harder and for longer in these instances in order to achieve a good outcome. Complex cases take longer to complete, so they cost more.
- Costs are included. Is there a lab fee for your DUI lawyer to re-test your blood sample? Is there a cost for subpoenaing evidence that they pass on? Alternatively, do they provide free perks, such as a free trip to court?
Do they, on the other hand, provide free perks, such as a free trip to court hearings if your license has been suspended?
There are no correct or incorrect answers to these questions, but you should clarify what is and is not included in their hourly rate up front.
- The attorney’s level of experience. A good lawyer will charge a higher fee. The lawyer you want to represent you is someone that judges respect, who has a track record of success in court, and who has years of expertise.
They should concentrate on DUI cases first and foremost. These lawyers will charge a higher hourly rate, but the extra expense will be well worth it.
They’re also more inclined to pay attention to you, respect you, and be concerned about the outcome of your case.
Find out more on How Much Do Lawyers Charge For A Dui Case
Do I Need an Attorney for Help with a DUI Charge?
Although hiring a DUI attorney is costly, it is frequently required. When speaking with a DUI lawyer, be sure to inquire about which pricing structure they intend to use and why.
Inquiring about an attorney’s fee structure may assist you in determining which attorney is the best fit for you and your case, particularly if you have the opportunity to consult with many attorneys before selecting one to represent you.
In your instance, an expert and local DUI lawyer or criminal lawyer will be able to file all essential motions. In addition, an attorney can represent you in any required court appearances or trials, while also attempting to lessen your sentence if possible.