Unfortunately, many people have experienced first hand the consequences of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. We have heard the stories or, in the most unfortunate circumstances, lost loved ones because of this crime. If you are accused of DUI under California Vehicle Code Section 23152(a), prosecutors will need to prove that you:
- Drove a vehicle;
- Were under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs; and
- You were not able to drive the vehicle with ordinary care because of your physical state.1
For a first DUI, you could be charged with a misdemeanor, which is punishable by:
- Up to six months in county jail;
- Up to $1,000 fines; and
- A six-to-twelve-month suspension of your driver’s license.2
Unfortunately, punishments do not end there. Being convicted of a DUI can impact the rest of your life, including your ability to gain and maintain employment.
Do You Have to Disclose a DUI to Employers?
How does a current or future employer know about your criminal record? Much of this depends on how honest you are when filling out a job application. Employers ask if you have been convicted of any crimes. Overall, honesty is the best policy.
If you have been convicted of DUI, you are in a catch-22 situation when it comes to your employer. On one hand, if you disclose your criminal conviction your employer may think you have trouble with the law and refuse to hire you. On the other hand, if you do not disclose this information, your employer may find out and now perceive you as a liar, as well as someone who has trouble with the law.3
If your employer does not ask about your conviction, it is not your responsibility to tell them. Moreover, just being arrested for a DUI, but not being convicted should not affect your job status.4 Overall, it is in your best interest to tell the truth about your DUI conviction if an employer specifically asks.
Whether disclosing this information will affect your ability to be hired depends on the employer and the type of job you are attempting to gain. Jobs that require you to work with children are more likely to factor in a DUI conviction. Jobs that require driving will be very difficult to obtain if you have been convicted of a DUI.5 Government jobs could also be difficult to get after your DUI conviction.
The type of job you are trying to obtain and the employer’s sensitivity to this crime will alter your ability to attain employment. Keep in mind that many employers are uncomfortable with job applicants who have been convicted of DUI.6
Will a DUI Conviction Affect Your Current Job?
A DUI conviction can affect your ability to keep your current job both directly and indirectly. First, if your current job requires you to drive a company vehicle, a DUI conviction that results in the suspension of your driver’s license will affect your ability to perform your job. Depending on your employer, the time you are forced to take off due to not having a license may cause you to be fired.
Not having a reliable method of transportation can also indirectly affect your job performance or ability to be at work on time. Additionally, a judge may order you to complete community service or attend counseling if you are convicted of a DUI. These court orders may affect your work schedule and force you to miss time from work. If your employer is not flexible, you may eventually lose your current job.7
Your company’s policy towards DUI convictions will ultimately determine if you are able to keep your job. Even as a longtime employee, you may lose your job if your company policy dictates. Many insurance companies will advise their business clients to check current employees’ criminal records. Companies do not want to be in a position where they are forced to pay large jury awards due to a DUI conviction.8
Call the DUI Defense Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich Today
If you are facing a DUI conviction, it is crucial that you understand the far-reaching ramifications it will have. All employers have separate policies and personal opinions on this crime, but there is a good chance your DUI conviction will impact your capacity to find or keep a job. Having an attorney who has successfully defended countless clients against DUI convictions will give you a better chance at proving your innocence and keeping your job. The attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have aggressively handled our clients’ DUI cases for over 30 years.
With offices located in Orange County, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Torrance, Riverside, West Covina, Victorville, Ventura, San Diego and Sherman Oaks, Wallin & Klarich is available to help you no matter where you work or live.
Call us at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 to discuss your case. We will get through this together.