A DUI, felony or misdemeanor, can have long-lasting effects to someone’s life. Having a DUI is a permanent record, which leaves a dark stain on your reputation and limits opportunities that would otherwise be abundant if you had a clean record. In a world where getting or keeping a job is already difficult, a DUI on one’s records makes it even more complicated.
Effect on Current Job
Once you have been convicted for a DUI (driving under the influence) in the State of California, your driving license is automatically suspended. Without this very important piece of plastic, getting around will become a major problem. Since you would probably need to go to work, your only options for moving around would be carpooling with a friend or colleague, calling a taxi, or using other means of public transportation (which are also very unreliable) every single day. Even if you do manage to find reliable transportation, court appointments, mandatory education classes, or jail-time will take up a large portion of your time. Your absenteeism from work will be very evident, which will put you in an awkward position with your employers when you have to explain why you’re always late or missing from work.
The State of California has a zero-tolerance policy for DUI’s, which makes the consequences even tougher. Depending on the terms of your contract or where you work, your employers have the liberty of firing you at will if your conviction comes to their attention. For job applications, most employers ask applicants to note down whether they have any prior convictions. While it is not mandatory to disclose this information, a DUI conviction on your record is a solid ground for firing since this would not constitute as a protected class for discrimination.
If you are convicted of any DUI charges, you may also likely lose your professional license. To learn more about how a DUI can affect people in real estate, see our article: Can a DUI Stop You from Becoming a Real Estate Agent? California also requires that you disclose any arrest to your licensing agency at once. Losing your medical, engineering, or legal license depends on your licensing agency. Some tend to be stricter than others and even mere charges without a solid conviction can still hinder your path to a successful career.
Effects on Future Opportunities
As discussed above, maintaining a job with an arrest record is hard as it is. The chances of you finding a job with a conviction are very slim. This is because employers usually associate a criminal record with people who have trouble following orders or a lack of integrity, which is an important quality. Once again, employers may ask for any prior convictions but applicants are not legally required to disclose such information. This creates a dilemma that could end badly in both situations. On one hand, you may choose a DUI conviction or charge to reveal to potential employers, which will demonstrate that you have trouble with the law. On the other hand, if you lie in your applications and a background check shows the opposite, you are both a liar and have trouble with the law. In any case, the best choice is to consult with an attorney and start on the process of having your records expunged.
You can read more about expunging criminal DUI records in our article: Getting an Expungement in California – A New Start!
DUI’s are hard to deal with and failure to address these charges in court effectively may lead to numerous setbacks in your life. However, with the help of a capable, competent, and experienced lawyer like Don Hammond, you have a chance of starting over or preventing a looming DUI conviction. If you already have a shadowing DUI conviction, Don Hammond is more than capable of helping you through the process of having your records expunged. Call us today.
If you are immediately worried about whether you will go to jail for a DUI, check out our article: Will I Go to Jail or Prison for a DUI?