Answer: Being arrested for a DUI with children in the car changes circumstances significantly most times. The charges are now a DUI modification, usually an aggravated DUI and possibly a child endangerment charge tacked on. Having children in the car also often changes views in a courtroom and defense tactics.
DUI laws have become more severe due to the danger and harm they place the public in, when a minor is in the vehicle with a drunk driver the law becomes even tougher. A DUI modification means that there have been charges added or escalated to a higher level. Having children in the car automatically escalates charges. An aggravated DUI is usually considered a low level felony in most jurisdictions. It also carries a jail sentence or possibly prison sentence, larger fines, license suspension, etc. A felony DUI also leaves a more serious mark on the convicted individual's criminal record, which may disqualify them from some jobs, living spaces and much more.
On top of the DUI modification of an aggravated DUI, if it is found that you were responsible for the children in the vehicle, a child endangerment charge may be added. This will mean longer incarceration and another conviction on your criminal record. A defense attorney will have to be able to suppress evidence or prove the children were not in danger in order for these charges to be lowered or dropped. This is often very difficult to do, it is recommended that you obtain a qualified attorney if you have been arrested for a DUI with children in the vehicle.