A DUI conviction could be detrimental to your career in many different ways. Naturally, if you earn a living behind the wheel, a DUI conviction would automatically translate to job loss, since your driver’s license is likely to be suspended.
Even if you don’t drive for a living, however, a DUI conviction could tarnish your image and reputation in a way that puts you on shaky ground with almost any employer. You may be seen as a “loose cannon” or someone who is irresponsible — and that could figure heavily in your superiors’ minds when it comes times for job assignments and promotions.
Could your job be at risk after a DUI conviction?
As stated earlier, it all depends on your line of work. However, things are likely to escalate much faster in specific jobs than in others. Some of these jobs include:
- Drivers, including bus drivers, delivery crews, salespeople, and so on
- Teachers, who work with children and are often subject to community standards
- Jobs that involve confidential information, like loan officers, financial experts and the like
- Military and government workers where high integrity levels are demanded
- Professional bodies, including lawyers, nurses, doctors, psychiatrists and others
Every situation is different, naturally, but many employers watch the news and are sensitive to the optics of a DUI conviction. You may even have a “morality clause” in your contract that could allow them to terminate you over it. Plus, a DUI is likely to show up on a background check done by potential employers — and that could limit your job prospects rather sharply.
Don’t let a single mistake ruin your career
It’s wise to keep in mind that an arrest does not always mean a conviction, and you can take steps to protect your future. An aggressive defense may help preserve both your good name and your career.