If you've ever been charged with a DUI here in Washington then you've probably wondered what the consequences are. As many of our Seattle readers already know, even a first-time DUI conviction can have serious repercussions while repeat offenses can lead to heftier fines and escalated consequences.
For those who may be new to our blog, here are a few things to consider when facing a drunk driving charge:
This first thing to consider is your driving privileges. Your first DUI conviction can result in your driver's license being suspended for 90 days, according to state laws. After that, the time increases. As an example, a third DUI can lead to a three year suspension. This can greatly impact a person's ability to get around and could even dictate whether they are able to get to work or not.
Another thing to think about is ignition interlock systems. These types of systems are installed on your vehicle and prohibit operation of a motor vehicle if the system detects alcohol on your breath. Much like a license suspension, this device can affect your ability to drive. It's important to note though that special ignition interlock licenses can be obtained by drivers who have had their license suspended but require transportation for specific reasons.
Aside from the obvious criminal penalties, some of our readers may not realize that a DUI conviction can have an even more impactful consequence to it. For those who do not know, a DUI can increase your insurance premiums by as much as 93 percent, according to InsuranceQuotes.com. This can be particularly problematic for a low-income earner or someone with financial instability because they may not be able to afford insurance coverage. They must then make the difficult decision to risk driving without insurance or struggle to make ends meet, which is a choice no one wants to make because of a DUI.
Sources: WTOP News, "Which driving infractions raise insurance premiums the most?" March 28, 2014
dui.findlaw.com, "State-by-State DUI Penalties," Accessed March 28, 2014