Nine Ways a DUI Can Destroy Your Career
There is no doubt that being arrested for a DUI can ruin your life.
While losing your career is just one potential consequence, it is a very real possibility. Here are nine ways being charged with a DUI can destroy your career.
- A suspended license: After being arrested for a DUI, your driver’s license will be suspended. The consequences of this are obvious if you drive for a living; but this can affect your job even if you do not have to drive while actually on the job. You will still need to get to work, and if you commute this will have a serious impact. The expense of taking a taxi or hiring a private driver is too exhaustive for most people, and taking public transportation can be unreliable. Your driver’s license might be essential to your job and if that is the case, your career can take a hit.
- Loss of insurance: In California, you may be eligible for a restricted license after a DUI conviction so that you can continue driving to and from work. But just because the authorities allow you to keep your license does not mean the insurance company will follow suit. Many insurance companies refuse to provide insurance to people after a DUI conviction. This is a major problem when you have to drive for your job and your employer’s insurance company refuses to insure you. And if your own insurance company refuses to insure you, you may still be off the road for some time while trying to find a new company. Either way, that insurance is going to be far more expensive than it was before the conviction.
- Possible firing: More and more employers are including mandatory firings for convictions of a crime in their employee handbooks. When they do, they often also make it mandatory that you report the arrest to them as soon as possible. If this is the case, even a minor DUI charge may have you leaving your job sooner than you had planned.
- Diversion programs: A diversion, or rehabilitative, program is something the courts may offer you to avoid going to jail. But in order to qualify for a diversion program you need to plead “guilty” or “no contest” to the crime, and the courts may make it mandatory that your employer is made aware of the situation. A case worker may even visit you at work. If your employer finds out and they have a mandatory firing policy, you could still lose your job even if you have managed to keep your license and avoid jail time.
- Loss of professional license: Many professions have licenses that workers in that field must hold in order to qualify for their careers. This is the case for lawyers, doctors, nurses, and accountants, to name just a few. One of the requirements of holding the license is that you must tell your employer immediately if you are convicted of a crime; and some agencies will even revoke your license. Again, this could result in the loss of your job.
- Missing work: Even if your employer decides to keep you on after a conviction, or even if they never find out about it, you will still be required to be present for court appearances. In addition, you may also be required to enroll in a substance abuse program, causing you to miss even more work. Missing all this time from work can cause problems, and you may be fired from your job just for this reason.
- Difficulty with future job applications: If you are fired from your current job after a DUI conviction, you will need to find new work. That conviction can cause problems here, too. Most applications ask if you have any arrests or convictions on your record and even when they do not, the potential employer may still be able to find out from public records or your driver’s license record, or by asking you why you left your last job.
- Difficulty getting education: Just as potential employers may not hire you if you have been convicted or arrested of a DUI, so too certain colleges and universities will not accept you. Applications for financial aid may also be turned down for the same reason. Some schools will still accept your application if you can prove that you have attended a treatment program, but not all will.
- Your commercial driver’s license: Due to the serious nature of DUI convictions, they stay on a commercial driver’s license for 55 years. If you need to drive for your career, there is a good possibility that you will simply need to find a new career.
There are many consequences that can come after being arrested or convicted of a DUI, and losing your job is one of them. It is serious, and it is something everyone needs to think of before getting behind the wheel after having a few drinks.
If you have been convicted of a DUI, JD Law may help you in court, get your conviction lowered, and possibly even help you keep your job. Contact criminal defense attorney James N. Dicks today at (760) 630-2000, and give yourself a chance at keeping your career, and your life, in order.