Newark, NJ- The holiday season is upon us and the celebrations will be plentiful. Along with the elaborate meals, gathering with families, friends and coworkers can also involve drinking. You should enjoy yourself by having a drink or two, but if you do be smart about it and Don’t Drink and Drive this holiday season.

In spite of knowing that driving drunk is dangerous and can come at a high price, many people will do it. Thanksgiving, the unofficial kick-off of the holiday season, also happens to be the deadliest day on the nation’s roads marked by more fatal drunk driving accidents than any other holiday, even New Year’s Eve, according to AAA.

When it comes to drinking and driving, many people are aware that a conviction can lead to a jail sentence and the suspension of their driver’s license, but few consider or aware of the high price of a DWI. The costs extend far beyond the criminal penalties and can set a convicted offender back by a several thousand dollars.

A person who is convicted of DWI in New Jersey will face the following penalties:

  • Loss of their driver’s license for three months to year depending on their blood alcohol level
  • Criminal fines from $250 to $500
  • A $200 fee to be paid to the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center
  • A  $100 fee paid to a drunk driving fund
  • A $100 fee paid to the Alcohol Education and  Rehabilitation fund
  • A $75 fee paid to the Neighborhood Services Fund
  • A $1,000 annual auto insurance surcharge for 3 years
  • An average of $33 in court costs
  • Be required to install an ignition interlock device which includes and installation fee and monthly calibration fees

That adds up to $4,000 just for the associated fines and fees imposed on you by the courts if you are convicted of driving while intoxicated charge. That total doesn’t account for the other financial costs of a DWI.

One thing some fail to take into consideration when they get behind the wheel drunk is the drag on their time. You will have to take extra days off of work to make your court dates and meet with your Newark DWI attorney.

If you happen to be sentenced to jail, a term of which can range from 24 hrs. to one year,  you will have to take that time off of work and for some that job may not be waiting when their sentence is up. Most people could not afford to lose a month of income, much less an entire year.

When you hire a DWI attorney, which everyone should, then you can add their fees onto the total price of a DWI. The exact amount a DWI offense will cost you depends of the attorney you hire which is something they will cover in your initial consultation.

With the right DWI attorney, you can mitigate some of those costs and may avoid the worst of the penalties by building a strong defense; this is the one thing you should never be a cheap about.