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How Can a Single DUI Affect Your Future Career?

Updated on March 15, 2023 → Under

If you’re found guilty of drunk driving charges, you may face the following criminal penalties for a DUI:

  • A permanent criminal record;
  • A driver’s license suspension;
  • You’ll need to pay hefty fines based on your own case details;
  • If you’re a repeat offender, you’ll need to install an ignition interlock system for a period of time deemed appropriate by the Illinois Secretary of State.
  • You may have to take all DUI classes and/or counseling before your driver's license reinstatement.
  • You may have to pay much higher insurance rates or lose your insurance coverage entirely.
  • A commercial driver who is convicted of a DUI in Illinois while operating any vehicle is disqualified from driving commercial vehicles for at least one year.

The penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs for a first DUI offense include a fine of up to $2,500.00, plus additional costs for the recommended DUI classes and lawyer fees. Another major effect of a 1st DUI is the installation of a breath alcohol ignition interlock device at your expense and a criminal record for life. If you’re convicted of a third DUI in Illinois, within 20 years of the previous conviction whose blood alcohol content at the time of the third DUI violation was 0.16 or higher, you’re subject to an additional mandatory minimum jail sentence of 90 days and a mandatory minimum fine of $2,500.

One of the first things someone asks themselves is "how can a DUI affect your future career" after an arrest. If you or a loved one is facing DUI charges in Illinois, the experienced DUI criminal defense attorneys at Dohman Law Group can help you get your charges reduced or even dismissed. We know that a DUI charge can bring employment issues in your career, even as a first-time offender.

We have represented thousands of clients in Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, and Will County and helped them maintain a clean driving record and secure their livelihoods. To schedule a free initial consultation, call our criminal defense law firm today at (847) 616-9993, or chat with us online to learn how we can help you.

Will a DUI Ruin My Career?

After a DUI conviction or pleading guilty to a DUI charge, it’s extremely difficult to explain a DUI on a job application. An unfortunate but important reality that people charged with intoxicated driving offenses need to be aware of is the number of jobs you can’t get with a DUI – even if you're a first-time offender.

Today, there are many companies that won’t hire DUI offenders because a DUI offense is considered a crime on a job application. Often, the reason is the company’s code of conduct policy for hiring a person with a criminal record or insurance liability issues if a company vehicle is required for the job. Because of these limitations, it’s difficult to get a job with a DUI record.

Some people think that getting a DUI expunged from their criminal history can help them solve the employment issues of getting a job. However, under the Illinois laws for a DUI conviction, you can’t get a DUI expunged from your public criminal record. Thus, a DUI conviction will remain on record for life.

A man fired from his job for a DUI charge

Therefore, any misdemeanor DUI offense or felony DUI charge will affect employment severely, because of a standard employment background check performed on every job applicant. It’s essential to know these facts regarding employment concerns at the beginning of your DUI case.

This will allow you to know the long-term penalties and effects a DUI can have in your life, and you won’t find out the hard way later on while doing a job search. Most DUI offenders who are aware of these issues know the best option to secure their future is to hire an experienced DUI criminal defense attorney to help them fight their DUI charges vigorously while there is still time.

How Long Does Your First DUI Stay on Record?

Illinois treats drunk driving offenses seriously and has a zero-tolerance policy for DUI convictions. Thus, if you’re convicted of driving under the influence, that conviction will remain on your record for life.

However, the Criminal Identification Act permits the sealing of a criminal record, which means your permanent criminal record will still exist, but access is restricted by a required court order. So, your criminal record isn’t available to the public, and can only be accessed by getting a court order. For a felony DUI offense where a conviction can’t be expunged, sealing your record can be a suitable alternative. However, it’s illegal to seal a DUI conviction in Illinois.

Expungement allows the state to destroy physical copies of a person’s criminal record and remove a person’s name from public and official records regarding a particular crime. However, whether you were tried as a minor or even as an adult and even if you only received probation, a DUI conviction can’t be expunged in Illinois.

Do I have to Disclose DUI to an Employer?

Most employers ask whether you have a criminal conviction during the job application process. However, is a DUI a criminal offense on a job application? Unfortunately, it is. You can try to hide the DUI conviction by not bringing it up during the application process and hoping that your potential employer doesn’t run a complete background check on you.

However, if you’re caught doing so, you may get disqualified immediately from the position. So, no matter how you look at it, having a DUI conviction in your public record can reduce your chances of getting jobs in the future. A DUI conviction makes it difficult for you to land a job, and you can’t make that conviction go away.

How will a DUI Affect My Criminal Record and Background Checks for Employment Opportunities?

Another way a DUI can affect a person’s life who is convicted or pleads guilty to an impaired driving charge is they will receive a permanent criminal record for life which will never go away. And the record will always show in background checks for both current and future employment opportunities.

A DUI criminal record can significantly affect your ability to get a job in the future if the prospective employer runs a background check and finds the DUI on your record. For example, it’s impossible to be employed as a firefighter, police officer, teacher, government employee, nurse, truck driver requiring a CDL License, and several other professional jobs.

How can a DUI affect my future career?

Although drunk driving laws and technology for law enforcement to catch DUI offenders are evolving to catch more drunk drivers, luckily so are some valuable new DUI Apps and devices that can show how to prevent and save drivers from a DUI arrest. These devices potentially stop a person from unknowingly choosing to drive while under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

Thus, with these devices drivers can avoid the negative impacts of a DUI conviction and they can keep their record clean. Also, this promising anti-DUI technology helps those who have already been charged or convicted of a first-time DUI offense, from making the grave mistake of a second. And they prevent repeat DUI offenses from happening again in the future and have a DUI further affect your life even worse under those circumstances.

What Jobs Do a DUI Disqualify You For?

After a DUI arrest offense charge or conviction, your job could be at risk. But the following jobs are more at risk and you may be disqualified from these jobs after a DUI arrest or conviction:

  • Drivers. This includes truck drivers, bus drivers, school bus drivers, delivery drivers, and even outside salespeople.
  • Teachers. If you work with children, it may be challenging to find or keep a job after a DUI conviction.
  • Jobs dealing with confidential information. Many companies that handle confidential information won’t employ anyone with a criminal record.
  • Government. You may struggle to get a security clearance, which may hinder you from working for the government.
  • Military. If you can’t get a security clearance, you may also not be able to join the military.
  • Professionals such as doctors, nurses, lawyers, plumbers, electricians, accountants, and engineers.

There are many severe consequences that can come after being charged or convicted of DUI criminal charges and losing your job is one of them. A DUI charge is serious, and it’s something you need to think of before getting behind the wheel after having a few drinks.

If you or someone you have been convicted of a DUI, the experienced DUI criminal defense attorneys at Dohman Law Group can help you in court. Depending on the circumstances of your DUI, we can get your DUI conviction reduced, and possibly even help you keep your job. Call our seasoned DUI criminal defense attorneys today at (847) 616-9993 and give yourself a chance to keep your career, and your life, in order.

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