DWI convictions, and even charges, carry financial costs that can extend from $1,000 to tens of thousands of dollars. These charges stem from escalating charges for DWIs, as well as license reinstatement fees, probation fees, towing, license reinstatement fees, installing ignition interlock devices and other fees.

In the following article, we’ll break down the full cost of a DWI in Minnesota.

DWI Defense Lawyers in Apple Valley, Minnesota

James Blumberg will fight for you if you face drunk driving charges in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. As a former prosecutor with the Dakota County Attorney’s Office, James Blumberg understands how the other side works, and puts that knowledge to work as an Apple Valley DWI defense lawyer.

Call today at (952) 431-7758 to set up a free consultation.

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DWI Charge Costs

The initial cost of a DWI depends on whether or not you are a repeat offender. The maximum fines under Minnesota law are:

  1. $1,000 for a first offense
  2. $3,000 for a second offense
  3. $14,000 for third and subsequent offenses, or for a felony DWI

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Additional Costs

In addition to fees imposed by the court, you may face additional surcharges as a result of reinstatement, towing or other fees. We’ll go over each possible charge in this section.

Ignition Interlock Device

If you are convicted of a DWI, you may opt into an Ignition Interlock Device program. As a result, your license will be reinstated earlier (or not revoked at all). This program requires you to install a device on your vehicle to verify you have zero alcohol in your body before driving.
IID programs can vary in cost, but on average they can cost:

  1. $150 to install
  2. $100 a month in maintenance, including monitoring
  3. $50 – 100 for removal

Insurance Rates

If you receive a DWI conviction, you will be required to pay for SR-22 car insurance. SR-22 insurance is a special type of insurance that proves you have insurance meeting the minimum coverages required by law. This type of insurance costs around 72% more than typical car insurance.

License Reinstatement Fees

When your license is suspended or revoked, you have to pay to be able to use it again. These fees typically costs around $680 in Minnesota.

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Indirect Costs

There are several indirect costs associated with DWI convictions, including:

  1. Jail Time – If you are required to serve jail time (a requirement for repeat offenses)
  2. Employment – Some employers may have strict, zero-tolerance policies for drug and alcohol offenses. In addition, any days you spend in jail or in court may result in lost income.
  3. Lawyer fees – You will likely want to retain a lawyer to help reduce the overall cost of the DWI. Without a lawyer, you may be placed on a year or two-year suspension, as opposed to 6 months or less.

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The Bottom Line

How much a DWI costs will vary based on the person and the amount of repeat driving (and DWI) offenses you have.

A first-time offender will often face around $10,000 in total costs, a second time offender may expect up to $15,000 – $20,000 in charges, and a repeat offender may expect a total cost of above $35,000.

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How a DWI Defense Lawyer Can Help

The primary goal of a defense lawyer in a DWI case is rarely to get you “off the hook.” While it may sometimes be the goal to refute a DWI outright, it is more often the case that your attorney will seek to mitigate the impact of the charges.

This includes reducing the level of DWI, such as bringing it down from a felony to a misdemeanor, if possible, and reducing other penalties, such as the length of requirement for an IID or license suspension.

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Additional Resources

Cost of a DWI – For a more direct reference, read the Department of Public Safety’s “DWI Consequences” pamphlet. This paper provides a short breakdown of the fines and restrictions that you may expect if you’re convicted of a DWI.

DWI Statutes – Read the exact statutes for Minnesota’s DWI laws, including the limits for alcohol and the associated criminal penalties.

Ignition Interlock Device Program — In some instances after a DWI conviction, drivers could be eligible to participate in the Minnesota Ignition Interlock Device Program through the Department of Public Safety. Learn more about the program and how to apply.

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Hire a DWI Defense Attorney in Apple Valley, Minnesota

As a former Assistant Dakota County Attorney, James Blumberg is familiar with how prosecutors build their cases. Attorney Blumberg has decades of experience representing those accused of driving while intoxicated and is ready to provide full-service representation.

If you face a DWI charge in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, including Dakota County, Scott County, Sibley County, Rice County, Olmsted County, Dodge County, and Carver County. Call Apple Valley DWI lawyer James Blumberg today.

Call (952) 431-7758 today to set up a free consultation.

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