You have probably seen a news story featured recently about a police officer that lost his job for a DUI. In case you are ever arrested for a DUI, it is important to realize that the penalties go far beyond possible jail time. You might not know that a DUI can have a devastating impact on your job:
Here Are 9 Ways That a DUI Is Likely to Damage or Destroy Your Career
1. License Suspension
If your license is suspended and you don’t get an exemption for driving to and from work as allowed in certain circumstances in many states, then you will be forced to take a taxi, hire a private driver, or taking the bus to and from work. Unfortunately, taking the bus is highly unreliable and you might end up being fired for your lateness. If your job requires you to drive, you will be out of work.
2. Mandatory Employment Termination Policy
Employers often provide in employment contracts and handbooks that being convicted of a crime is enough reason to lose your job. If your employer has such a policy, you are likely to lose your job. Employees with such a policy usually demand that they be immediately notified after an arrest.
3. Loss of Insurance
If your job demands that you drive, and if you manage to keep your license, your insurance provider may not cover people with DUIs. If you are covered for driving heavy equipment or a vehicle by company insurance, your employer might lose the coverage in case they decide to keep you in their payroll. Your employer may not have any other option besides firing you. Even if you eventually manage to be covered, your insurance as well as that of your employer are likely to be more expensive. Your employer might not be willing to pay extra to retain you.
4. Diversion Program
If you are fortunate enough to qualify for a diversion program that allows you to avoid jail term, there still could be mandatory notification of the employer and perhaps even required visits to you at work. Some states might waive this requirement if you are able to show that your handbook provides that being convicted of a crime is grounds for firing. However, other states require a guilty plea before being entered into a diversion program and if your employer learns of the conviction, you will probably lose your job.
5. Professional License
Professional licenses, such as those for doctors, nurses, lawyers, or even plumbers often require that arrests be disclosed to the licensing agency. Depending on the agency and your state, it may affect your license. If you lose your license, you will lose your job too. It may also cause long term problems as an arrested image of you from the arrest may also appear online.
6. Missed Work
You are likely to miss work for court appearances and perhaps even mandatory alcohol treatment. You might even face mandatory imprisonment. You might even get hit with excessive absenteeism. In addition, you will have to deal with the embarrassment of having to explain why you have to be out.
7. Job Applications
Employers are not allowed to ask about arrests and convictions on job applications in some states, but most actually do. Your Dui is also likely to appear in the public record as well as on your driver’s license records.
Universities and colleges now frequently ask whether or not you have ever been convicted of a crime. Similarly, financial aid applications are also likely to be affected by a DUI. You might even be required to prove that you have completed a treatment program or find yourself losing out altogether.
9. Commercial Driver’s License
DUIs often show up on commercial driving records for 55 years. If you are a commercial driver, your career is probably at its end.