Virtually no one plans to face criminal charges related to drinking and driving, yet these legal issues are not uncommon among Colorado residents. A recent article looked at the cost of a first-time DUI conviction in the state, and the results may surprise many readers. The information in the article was provided by a commander of the Colorado State Patrol and based on his years of experience in the field.

The estimated cost of a DUI was listed at $13,530. That figure includes a number of things, some of which are not top of mind when making a decision on whether to drive home or pay a driver. For example, the initial costs include having to pay for a jail stay or stint in detox. Then, there is the need to get the car out of impound. A person charged with DUI will also have immediate legal needs and may have to pay for the full cost of those legal services.

There are also costs associated with having to comply with terms of probation, which could include placing an ignition interlock in one’s vehicle, attending alcohol and drug classes and covering probation fees. Auto insurance is almost guaranteed to rise and to remain elevated for several years to follow. In all, there are an estimated two dozen different fees associated with a first-time Colorado DUI, which should cause one to pause when thinking about whether or not to get behind the wheel after drinking.

That said, people make mistakes. For those in Colorado who are facing DUI charges, the best approach is to seek legal counsel right away and begin preparing an aggressive legal response. Working with an attorney who is well-versed in DUI law can help mitigate many of the financial factors discussed above.

Source:, “Guest opinion: Cost of first-time DUI in Colorado? $13,000“, Richard Duran, March 23, 2017

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