A First Conviction For Impaired Driving Can Cost More Than $6,000

Montreal, QC (Nov. 25, 2016) – On the eve of the 33rd annual Operation Red Nose campaign, an initiative supported by CAA-Quebec for more than 20 years, many people still underestimate the financial consequences associated with driving under the influence of alcohol. That’s why we remind drivers today that a first conviction for impaired driving can lead to a minimum of $6,000 in costs! And to that, it should be remembered, can be added the far more dramatic possible impacts on human lives.

Every year in Quebec alone, some 15,000 motorists have their licence suspended for driving with their faculties impaired by alcohol. And driving under the influence remains, even today, one of the leading causes of death — not to mention severe and minor injuries — on our roads.

“In addition to endangering lives, this behaviour has dramatic impacts on professional, social and personal lives. And the financial consequences are clearly worth thinking about,” emphasizes Sophie Gagnon, Vice President, Communications and Public Affairs, for CAA-Quebec.

An avalanche of costs and restrictions

Once there has been a conviction for a violation, a minimum $1,000 fine must be paid, but be aware that the costs don’t end there! Add the fees for legal representation in court ($350/hour on average), the cost for the mandatory summary evaluation of the accused’s alcohol-related behaviours ($300), the fee to have a new driver’s licence issued and the payment of an additional contribution to the Soci�t� de l’assurance automobile du Qu�bec ($300), in addition to the expense of an obligatory educational Alcofrein session ($150).

There’s more:

  • Immediate driver’s licence suspension;
  • Towing and storage of the vehicle, and all the related costs!;
  • Installation on the vehicle of an alcohol interlock device, if authorized.

See the comprehensive table of costs.

“A conviction for impaired driving will also follow you elsewhere than to your insurer, and for several years,” points out Suzanne Michaud, Vice President, Insurance, at CAA-Quebec, “Because insurers must manage the risks associated with such a conviction, the premiums will be much higher — up to 200% higher from the first year!”

Real alternatives

There are no excuses for driving under the influence when there are a multitude of options available in every region of the province:

  • Operation Red Nose (November 25 to December 31, 2016)
  • CAA-Quebec’s Safe Ride Service
  • Zero tolerance
  • Raccompagnements Point Z�ro 8 (designated driver service)
  • Taxis and Cool Taxi coupons
  • Planned carpooling

In addition, for more than two decades, CAA-Quebec has offered its Roadside Assistance service free of charge to all Operation Red Nose volunteers, whether or not they are members, for the entire seasonal campaign. This is another way we are contributing to making Quebec’s roads safer.

Leaving the country, not so easy!

And if you want to visit the United States, you’ll have to deal with a variety of restrictive administrative formalities, including a cost of approximately $500 to obtain an English version of the court judgment done by a professional translator referred by the Quebec Bar Association. Customs authorities could ask for this English version at the border.

About CAA Quebec

CAA-Quebec, a not-for-profit organization, provides all of its members with peace of mind by offering them high-quality automotive, travel, residential and insurance benefits, products and services. For more information, visit www.caaquebec.com.