If you are like most people in New Jersey, the job you have now is a stepping stone. Even if you are working in the field of your choice, you know there are always opportunities to move forward with greater responsibility, more money and higher prestige. However, if you are currently facing a DUI charge, you may find those opportunities suddenly limited.
In fact, depending on the industry in which you currently work, a DUI conviction may cost you the job you have and make it all the more difficult to find work in the future.
If you go job hunting with a DUI conviction on your record, you may have to eliminate any careers that involve the following:
- Driving: Not just pizza delivery, but many sales jobs require travel. Work in logistics, catering or managerial positions often require travel using a company vehicle, which a boss may be reluctant to offer you if you have a DUI conviction.
- Background checks: This may include military, law enforcement or education.
- Professional licensing: Requirements for some licenses in many states eliminate those who have DUI convictions. This may include jobs in the medical field, real estate or finance.
Additionally, some potential employers may interpret a DUI offense as evidence of character flaws or deeper problems like alcoholism. They may fear you will cost the company money if you miss work frequently or get hurt on the job because of your drinking.
Is your current job at risk?
Although your employer may not fire you simply because of a DUI arrest or conviction, circumstances related to your arrest may contribute to your firing. For example, if you must miss work for hearings or a trial, community service, or even jail time, your employer may not feel obligated to hold your position for you. Additionally, if you lose your license, you may not have a reliable way to get to work or perform any duties that require travel.
What is the best way to avoid conviction?
As with any crime, evidence plays a primary part in a DUI arrest. In many cases, the evidence available to law enforcement — such as field sobriety tests and breath tests — may be unreliable or questionably obtained. From the moment police pulled you over, there were opportunities for mistakes in police procedure that infringed on your civil rights.
An experienced attorney will know how to identify those errors in police procedure and recognize when the results of a sobriety test are invalid. Your attorney will fight to protect your rights and your future opportunities. Having such an attorney at your side from the earliest possible moment may mean the difference between facing the harsh penalties of a DUI conviction or moving toward a more positive resolution.