Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious crime in any state. No one is ever let off the hook when it comes to DUI charges; however, there are ways to ensure penalties refrain from escalating too high.

When you think of a DUI charge, what comes to mind? Rehab? Jail Time? These are very real possibilities, but not many motorists understand the full spectrum of consequences that may occur if they are in fact arrested for driving while intoxicated.

Criminal Penalties

A DUI is a crime, and as such, a convicted motorist faces criminal penalties. Punishment for drunken driving charges may include, but are not limited to the following:

• Expensive fines and fees
• Being ordered to perform community service
• Being ordered to attend an alcohol evaluation class
• If a repeat offender, may be ordered to attend rehab
• Having one’s license suspended or revoked
• Having one’s car impounded
• Being ordered to install an ignition interlock device
• Prison time

Non-Criminal Consequences

Although a motorist convicted of DUI may serve their allotted sentence, the charge can stay with them for a lifetime. Non-criminal DUI consequences may include:

• Losing one’s job
• Being denied a new position
• Being denied financial assistance
• Becoming ineligible for a commercial license
• Losing civil rights (especially if the DUI charge is a felony)

In order to minimize penalties, anyone arrested for drunk driving is encouraged to turn to a DUI lawyer to file a case.