Most people are well aware of the devastating consequences of a DUI conviction. National media campaigns and local law enforcement officials work hard to disseminate the message of sober driving. While the legal, financial, and career consequences of drunk driving are clear, the impact that it can have on your family is not as well-known. The negative effects of drunk driving can challenge your family before you are ever charged and/or convicted of driving under the influence. The most glaring concern is safety. Not only the safety of your family (if they are passengers) but yours as well. The moment that you decide to get behind the wheel of a car after drinking, your chances of getting into an accident dramatically increases. If you suffer injuries or are killed, your family can lose vital emotional and financial support from you. Before you drive while under the influence of alcohol, it is in your best interest to know exactly what you are risking. Learn more about the effects of drunk driving on a family below.
Consequences of Drunk Driving
Drunk driving kills nearly 30 people every day in the U.S. Though this number is alarming enough, it does not account for the many others that are killed or injured as a result of a person driving after just one or two drinks and still within the legal limits of blood alcohol concentration. In addition to injury, death, and property damage, the consequences of drunk driving include:
- Jail Time
- License Suspension
- Criminal Record
- Difficulty Finding a Job or Affordable Housing
- Negative Effects on Child Custody Cases
- Paying For and Utilizing an Ignition Interlock Device
- Legal Fees
- Higher Insurance Premiums
- Inability to Work in Certain Professions
How a DUI Can Effect Your Family
Though all of the aforementioned consequences seem to be personal, they are not. They can have a major effect on the lives of everyone in your family. For instance, if you typically drive your children to school every morning, you may lose the ability to do so. Furthermore, if you are currently employed in a field that requires a clean record (or at least no DUI convictions), it could affect your ability to adequately provide for the members of your family. Each consequence that primarily affects you will have an ancillary (yet potentially more devastating) effect on family members. If you have been charged with a DUI offense, it is in your best interest to exhaust every opportunity to have your charges decreased, dismissed, or have your penalties lessened. Otherwise, your mistake could impact the people that you love the most.
The Benefits of Working With a DUI Attorney
Recent studies have proven that more than 70 percent of Americans have done something illegal at least once in their life. With this in mind, it’s safe to assume that everyone is entitled to their mistakes. Working with an experienced DUI attorney can be a positive step in the direction of rectifying your mistake before it impacts your criminal record, finances, freedom, and family. While it is within your right to defend yourself or work with a court-appointed attorney, these options are not typically as effective as hiring a reputable DUI attorney. Hiring an attorney will not guarantee a favorable outcome in your case, but it will certainly increase the likelihood.