A DUI arrest or conviction can carry a variety of consequences outside of the criminal justice system. Many people are aware of the short-term setbacks, such as losing your driver’s license. However, there are also long-term consequences which are not so apparent but can be very damaging.
Whether your DUI charge is a felony or a misdemeanor, it may possibly show up on your background check. Before hiring an applicant, many employers conduct a criminal background check. This could prevent you from obtaining the job you want despite your qualifications. Some professions, such as the medical field, require all employees to have clean records, preventing you from ever being able to gain employment in that field or could cause you to lose your current position. However, employers are not the only ones to conduct background checks. Colleges and universities do background checks regularly as part of the admission and financial aid process. While a DUI may not be severe enough for some colleges and universities to deny you admission, it can prevent you from obtaining financial aid and scholarships, leaving you to have to fund your education on your own.
A DUI can carry not only an expensive ticket, but also fines and court fees which must be paid. If your case is going to court, hiring an attorney could greatly benefit your case. An attorney understands the laws regarding your case and can help guide you through the criminal justice system. A lawyer, like Groth & Associates – Toledo’s criminal defense lawyers, can also ensure that you are being treated fairly by the courts. The financial burden can continue even after your case is resolved. A DUI, and any tickets associated with it, go on your traffic report which is checked by insurance companies. After you get your license back and are able to drive again, you may be stuck with costly insurance premiums that could take years of good driving to lower.
Personal and Professional Relationships
A DUI conviction, or even just an arrest, can change your relationships at work and at home. Co-workers and supervisors may view you differently which could cause feelings of isolation at work. Due to the judgments of your boss, you may not be assigned that special project you wanted or may miss out on a promotion, making advancing your career difficult. Handling your DUI case can cause you to miss a large amount of time at work for attending court dates and possible jail time. These excessive absences could cause you to lose your job altogether. In your personal life, family members may express varied emotions about your DUI such as sadness, anger or worry. You may feel their constant questioning about your activities and drinking habits as over-bearing, causing you to further isolate yourself.
Overcoming a DUI arrest or conviction can be a very challenging process. Even years after the event, the effects of a DUI can still be felt. By understanding all of the consequences that follow, you can take steps to protect yourself and your family.
This article is courtesy of Anita Ginsburg, a freelance writer from Denver who often writes about home, family, law and business. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family when she isn’t writing.