One night, you and your friends decided to go out and party. When it was time to go home, you decided that it was better to drive home instead of hailing a cab or staying at a friend’s house. On the way home, you got pulled over by a police officer and was arrested for driving under the influence. This happened years ago, and yet you are still suffering the consequences of making the wrong decision.
What you and other drivers need to understand is that a DUI or DWI conviction can result in a criminal record. Not only will you face criminal charges, but you will also suffer from long-term ramifications of having a DUI on your record.
This will affect different aspects of your life, including future job opportunities.
How A DUI Affects Employment Opportunities
When you apply for a job, you will need to fill out an application form. In the form, there is usually a section regarding prior convictions. If you filled out this section, the employer might discard your application from the beginning. If you decide not to disclose your prior conviction, and the employer require a background check, your DUI will still show up.
You need to understand that employers will conduct a background check when you apply for a job. If you have a previous DUI conviction, your background check will reveal it. Although there is no law that prohibits employers from hiring an applicant with a DUI/DWI on their record, most employers are hesitant to hire an applicant with a record. Since a conviction can be considered as a sign of alcohol addiction, your potential employer might be wary that you could turn up for work completely drunk or intoxicated.
Even if you are currently employed, a DUI charge will still affect your employment status. There are times wherein a conviction will be automatically reported to your employer. Therefore, if you have a job at a transportation-related field, you could lose your job. The employer has the right to suspend your or terminate your work contract if he believes that it is best for the company.
Thankfully, there is a way to get your life back to normal. According to Tad Nelson & Associates, a Texas based law firm, you can petition the court to have all case documents regarding your DUI conviction be removed and destroyed. This procedure is referred to as the expungement proceeding.
Can I Get My DUI Expunged?
Expunging a DUI means permanently erasing or sealing the conviction from your criminal record. This means that all information concerning the DUI, such as computer records, files, and criminal charges are sealed and destroyed. However, it can still be seen by law enforcers to determine if you have an existing criminal record. But expunging a DUI will keep your criminal record from hindering you in getting a job.
Keep in mind though that certain factors will prevent you from getting your DUI expunged:
If you have prior convictions on your record
If you have multiple DUI convictions
If the DUI conviction was a felony, meaning someone was killed or injured
If you are qualified, you need to complete the expungement procedure:
Fill out the formal request- Motion for Expungement, or an application.
Submit the request to the county court and pay the fees.
Provide the prosecutor’s office with the required number of copies of the motion
Attend the scheduled expungement hearing.
You will need to appear in court and in front of a judge. If you are qualified and everything is in proper order- and the judge agrees, a court order will be released to expunge your DUI conviction from your records.