How Does Getting a DUI Affect My Family?

Driving Under the Influence is one of the most common convictions in the country. While most people think of alcohol, people are also convicted of DUI if they have drugs or prescribed medications in their system.

While many DUI arrests avoid severe consequences, some cases aren’t so lucky. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration notes that thousands of DUI accidents are fatal every year.

Even if most arrests end up being minor, being arrested for DUI can have long-lasting effects. People often develop emotional and financial stress that impacts family relationships. Here’s a closer look.

Financial Impact

If your BAC is only slightly above the legal limit, you could still face jail time. If your BAC is above .16, you could go to jail for months, be fined thousands of dollars, and have your license suspended. You’ll also be responsible for covering legal fees.

These expenses could put a serious strain on your finances, especially if you have a family that depends on you for income. Perhaps you won’t be able to purchase that new house you were hoping for. Things could be even worse if you are fighting an addiction.

The financial consequences of a DUI arrest may make it difficult for you to cover expenses if you have to go to rehab. You could potentially accumulate debt.

Being Unable to Drive

Multiple DUI convictions may cause your license to be suspended for several years. If you have dependent family members, losing your ability to drive for an extended period of time could be devastating. Perhaps you’ll have to pay someone to run errands for you.

Maybe you’ll accumulate substantial costs paying for cab fare. Even if you don’t have to pay anything and will simply rely on your family for help, you are adding an extra burden to their workload.

Perhaps you’ll need to adjust your work schedule because you can’t drive. This may lead to serious consequences if your employer declines to adjust your schedule. You could lose your job.

Increased Insurance Premiums

You can expect to see your insurance rates increase by thousands of dollars if you have a DUI conviction on your driving record. There’s also a chance that your insurer may cancel your policy or deny coverage.

If you have multiple DUI convictions on your driving record, you are considered a high-risk driver. High-risk drivers have a difficult time finding affordable insurance.

Motorcyclists are impacted by this as well. Motorcycle accidents can be caused by lane changing, riding while distracted, head-on collisions, and rear-end accidents.

If you are convicted of DUI while operating a motorcycle, you can expect your motorcycle insurance rates to increase significantly.

Unemployment Issues

Some people lose their jobs due to a DUI conviction. Finding another job could be difficult. Your legal issues could be a major liability on the job market. Employers commonly run background checks on all potential employees.

Your DUI conviction will likely show up, which could lead to you being denied employment. Most DUI convictions pop up on background checks for at least seven years.

Marriage Issues

DUI convictions have often led to strained marriages. The tension helps long-term problems rise to the forefront. Addictions can cause one partner to pull away from the other. The increased stress may cause the parties to divorce.

There are constant arguments over financial issues and potential infidelity accusations. DUI convictions could even lead to more problems, such as domestic violence accusations. Things become even more complicated if children are involved.

Not being able to take your child to school and other issues may occur due to a DUI conviction. If things get worse between you and your spouse, someone may sue for full custody of the children.

It’s difficult to manage these issues smoothly, though research shows that 90% of child custody cases are settled without a judge’s input.

While often overlooked, DUI convictions may cause people to lose the trust of their loved ones.

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