A common issue on New Year’s Eve is drunk drivers on roads. But, do you know the real cost of a DWI?

The price of driving under the influence can affect you for years.

Attorney and author of Arkansas DWI Defense, John Collins, knows the true costs of a DWI, and he expects to help more people filter through them after New Year's.

"A DWI carries with it a fine of $1,000 dollars, or up to $1,000, court costs of $300," Collins said.

If you think getting a cab or Uber is too pricey, think again. Paying for a $1,000 DWI fine is nearly equivalent to taking a cab from Little Rock to Atlanta at the $2 per mile rate.

But, it doesn't stop there. The total expense of DWI arrest and conviction costs is like taking a taxi ride halfway around the world.

"To fight it correctly is very, very, very costly," Collins said.

These high penalties are in place to deter drunk driving.
Last year, 493 people were killed in alcohol-related crashes right here in Arkansas.

There is also a cost you pay that doesn't come with a price tag.

"The legal consequences are stiff but they're not nearly as stiff as what we call the societal consequences. Having an interlock in your car when you take your children to school would be a little bit embarrassing," Collins said.

Other fees that will hurt your wallet include higher insurance costs.

"Increased insurance premiums. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that on average DWI will cost someone $18,000 over a 5 year period," Collins said.

You'd also come out of pocket for things like bail, an attorney, and the towing of your vehicle.

"Until we address the root problems of over-consumption of alcohol, we're still going to have DWI's," Collins said.