Interviewer: Do costs significantly increase for second or third DUIs?
Eric Sachs: Yes, they do. The ultimate fines that the client would see from the court would be higher. The theory behind it is that you do not get rewarded for bad behavior, as it were. So they can expect to pay a higher fine. It depends on the severity of the case and the circumstances of that case. The legal fee I expect would be higher. Again, it depends on the circumstances and the evidence that is out there against the accused. So, the more there is, and the more difficult or complicated the case, you can anticipate the fees and the fines to be more as well.
Payment Plans & Court Fee Structure
Interviewer: Can the court set up a payment plan for fees?
Eric Sachs: The court can do anything it wants to do. In Nassau County, for instance, the fee structure for most of the judges is that the day of sentencing is the day you have to pay. Suffolk County routinely gives the clients time to pay and they can mark the file’s partial payments as well. So the jurisdiction determines how they are going to pay, when they are going to pay, and in what installments, if any, they are going to pay.
Interviewer: Are there any certain fees that have to be paid immediately at full?
Eric Sachs: Not necessarily. Perhaps bail; if any and DMV fees. If you need to get your car back or to get a conditional license or something on those lines those fees would be payable immediately. At the end of the case, it is going to be up to the Judge of the court as to what their policies are to give that person time to pay or allow partial payments.
DUI with Drugs
Interviewer: If there were drugs involved in a DUI charge, would that increase the cost of the case? Would that make a difference?
Eric Sachs: It depends on how the charge came into being. A person is pulled over by the police. The police officer has that person submit to a breath test. The person blows into the machine and blows a zero. So now the police officer says they want you to submit to a urine test or a blood test to look for drugs. The case proceeds. lf there are drugs found, depending on the level of the drugs and where the drugs are, the fee could be a little different. The person can expect to pay a little bit of a higher fee for a drug case with blood or urine than they would for breath case.
Then we have the cases where drugs were actually found in the car. Then you will have additional charges besides the DWI; you have a possession charge. It could be marijuana, oxycodone, or heroin. You never know what is in the car or what is going to be found in the person’s blood. So depending on the circumstances of that case, the person on a potential drug case with blood can expect to pay a little bit of a higher fine than a person who just gave a breath sample.
It depends. If that case is just a little bit more specialized, then it requires a little bit more work.
By Eric Sachs