The Cost of a DUI: How Much Will It Really Set You Back?


Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious offense that can profoundly impact your finances. A DUI conviction can lead to fines, legal fees, and increased insurance rates, but it can also result in lost income and potential job loss.

In Minnesota, the costs of a DUI can be particularly high. We’ll explore the true cost of a DUI, including both the financial and personal consequences, and how a Minneapolis DWI lawyer can help.

What Constitutes a DUI in Minnesota?

According to Minnesota DWI laws, a DUI occurs when a person is found to be operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. For commercial drivers, the legal limit is even lower, at 0.04%.

Additionally, Minnesota has a “zero-tolerance” policy for drivers under 21, meaning that any detectable amount of alcohol in their system can result in a DUI charge.

The Financial Cost of a DUI in Minnesota

The financial costs of a DUI in Minnesota can be significant.
Some of the costs associated with a DUI conviction in Minnesota include:

  • Fines — The fines for a first-time DUI offense in Minnesota can range from $1,000 to $3,000. Repeat offenders can face fines of up to $14,000.
  • Legal fees — Legal fees for a DUI can vary widely, but they can easily add up to several thousand dollars. These fees may include the cost of a lawyer, court fees, and other legal expenses.
  • Ignition interlock device — In Minnesota, some DUI offenders are required to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in their vehicle. This device requires the driver to blow into a breathalyzer before the vehicle starts. Installing an IID can cost several hundred dollars, and the monthly rental fee can be up to $150.
  • Increased insurance rates — A DUI conviction can lead to significantly higher insurance rates. In Minnesota, a DUI can affect your car insurance for up to 10 years, meaning you could be paying higher insurance rates for a long time.
  • License reinstatement fees — After a DUI conviction in Minnesota, you may need to pay a fee to reinstate your driver’s license. This fee can be several hundred dollars.
  • Lost income — If you are convicted of a DUI, you may need to take time off work for court appearances or to serve a jail sentence. This can result in lost income, a significant financial burden.

The Personal Costs of a DUI in Minnesota

In addition to the financial costs of a DUI, there are also personal costs to consider.
Some personal costs of a DUI conviction in Minnesota include:

  • Jail time — A DUI conviction in Minnesota can result in jail time, even for first-time offenders. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you could be facing anywhere from a few days to several years in jail.
  • Community service — In some cases, DUI offenders in Minnesota may be required to perform community service as part of their sentence. This can be a time-consuming and potentially embarrassing process.
  • Job loss — If your job requires you to have a driver’s license or if your employer has a zero-tolerance policy for DUIs, a conviction could result in job loss.
  • Personal relationships — A DUI conviction can strain personal relationships, particularly if you injure someone while driving under the influence. This can result in long-lasting damage to your personal life.

Facing DUI Charges in Minnesota? Contact a Minneapolis DWI Lawyer

Driving under the influence is a serious offense, and there are significant financial and personal DWI consequences. In Minnesota, the financial impact of a DUI can be particularly high, with fines, legal fees, increased insurance rates, lost income, and more all contributing to the overall cost. Personal costs, such as jail time, community service, and strained relationships, can also profoundly impact your life.

If you are facing a DUI charge in Minnesota, it is important to speak with a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. A skilled DUI attorney at Martine Law in Minneapolis can help you understand your rights and options and can work to minimize your case’s financial and personal costs.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

Author Bio

Xavier Martine

Xavier Martine is the Founder of Martine Law, a Minnesota criminal defense and family law firm. Serving clients in Minneapolis, MN, and surrounding areas, he is dedicated to representing clients in a wide range of criminal matters, including DWIs, drug charges, misdemeanors, domestic violence, and other criminal charges. He also represents clients in family law matters, including divorce, child support, and child custody.

Xavier received his Juris Doctor from the Mitchell Hamline School of Law and is a member of the Minnesota State Bar Association. He has received numerous accolades for his work, including being named among the “Top 10 Criminal Defense Attorneys Under 40 in Minnesota” in 2021 by The National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys. He was also named the “Best DUI Lawyer in Minneapolis” award in 2023 by and a “Rising Star” in 2023 by SuperLawyers.

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