Drinking and driving is one of the most dangerous things to do on the road.  Not only are you endangering your own life, but you’re putting everyone else on the road in danger!    If you do drink and drive, and then get a DUI, there are many negative consequences that you can expect.  Besides the obvious embarrassment that goes along with a DUI, it can impact your job, finances, and personal life.

So, what are these consequences exactly?  Other than the obvious possibility of harming yourself or others, we’ve compiled a list of potential repercussions that may result from a DUI.

  •   One of the first things that will happen after a DUI is that your license will be revoked for a minimum of 30 days, however in most cases it’s for a longer period of time.  Losing your ability to drive can also cause many issues in your professional life.  If you aren’t located near any modes of public transportation, getting to work every day may suddenly become a problem.
  • Obviously if you can’t get to work because you lost your license, that’s a major issue.  Also, you may have to miss even more days to go to court for your DUI.  Another way it can affect your job?  Some employers may fire you if they find out you have a DUI because it brings your professional credibility into question.  Of course every company is different, but if you do not legally have to disclose your DUI to your employer, it’s best not to mention it.
  • Another consequence of a DUI is that you will likely have to take alcohol awareness classes, or if you have more than one offense you may be required to participate in a lengthy rehab program.  Every case is different but either way you will be spending a lot of time in a classroom.
  • Financially, a DUI will do a number on you.  First, you have to cover the cost of an attorney who can represent you in court.  That will cost you a few thousand right off the bat.  The longer your case is in court, the more you will have to pay and the more time you will have to take off from work.
  • Another thing that will cost you?  Your insurance.  Having a DUI on your record guarantees that your premium will go up.  In some cases it may double or even triple, depending on how many points you have on your license.  Getting a DUI in Massachusetts automatically gives you 5 points on your license, and many insurance companies will not write you a policy if you have 5 points or more.  A DUI will also remain on your license for six years before the points begin to decrease.
  • Getting insurance after a DUI can definitely be a challenge.  The largest carrier in the insurance market in Massachusetts, which is Commerce, will not write a policy for anyone with 5 points or more.  Many other carriers across the state follow this mentality, so finding insurance after a DUI will prove to be quite difficult.   Since there are less carriers that will write a policy for someone with a DUI, those that will write a policy will likely charge a lot more due to the risk they are assessing.
  • Another issue with finding insurance after a DUI?  Certain companies that will write a policy for someone with a DUI may only offer liability coverage.  This is a problem because unless you own your car outright, you will need full coverage.

Next time you are out enjoying an adult beverage, do yourself, and everyone else on the road a favor and either call a cab or designate a sober driver.  Not only will it save you some embarrassment, time, and money, it may also save a life.

Photo By: OregonDOT