A drunk driving arrest is seldom a fun way to end the day. In fact, many who go through this experience describe it as uncomfortable at best and humiliating at worst. Unfortunately, the moments and hours after police pull you over may be just the beginning of this ordeal.

You may have friends telling you that your recent arrest for drunk driving is no big deal. The fact is that too many people die in drunk driving accidents on Minnesota roads, and those who make and enforce the laws want to do their part to reduce those numbers. This means you are facing the potential for some harsh consequences if you are convicted. However, the consequences may go far beyond a fine and license suspension.

Long-term consequences

Undoubtedly, a conviction for even first-offense drunk driving will mean a steep fine, suspension of your driver’s license and the possibility of jail. You may also have hundreds or even thousands in fees and other costs related to your arrest, such as towing, DWI education, bail and court costs. However, the personal price you may pay could include the following:

  • Your car insurance premiums will probably rise significantly.
  • You may miss time at work or even lose your job altogether, depending on your profession.
  • A conviction on your record may make it difficult for you to find work in certain fields.
  • You may not be able to leave the state while on probation, and a criminal record may ban you from travel to certain other countries, including Canada.
  • You may jeopardize your chances of a successful bid for child custody.
  • Depending on the circumstances, your arrest may be public in the local newspaper or on the social media pages of police or local press.
  • Even if police do not publicize your picture and the circumstances of your arrest, those records are still available to the public and will likely surface during a background check.

As you can see, when officers handcuff you and take you to the station, the nightmare may be just beginning. If you were not involved in an accident, you can count yourself very fortunate. An accident is only one way in which an already serious situation can become even worse. In either case, it is wise to seek legal counsel as quickly as possible to protect your rights and to ensure you have the best chance of obtaining the most positive outcome possible for your case.