How a DUI Conviction Can Affect Your Job Search
March 14th, 2017 by CLLB Law
If you have a driving under the influence (DUI) on your record, you may wonder, can I get a job with a DUI conviction? A DUI conviction is embarrassing enough as it is, but to have it follow you around the job market puts you in a tough spot. It absolutely can affect a person’s future employment prospects, as most employers make a point to inquire about misdemeanor and felony convictions. Many employers also routinely perform background checks from law enforcement agencies. Everyone deserves a second chance, and many people caught drinking and driving make sure to never let it happen again. Luckily, there are reasonable employers out there who understand that making mistakes is only human — but you won’t likely be able to completely avoid a few frustrating rejection letters.
Legal Protection from Discrimination May Impact Whether You Can Get a Job with a DUI Conviction
Whether referred to as DWI (driving while intoxicated), OWI (operating while intoxicated), or OVI (operating a vehicle impaired), the wording of the charge doesn’t change the fact of a conviction. If that’s the only activity your record has ever seen, that’s helpful for your employment possibilities. What’s also helpful is that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 made it illegal to discriminate against an applicant on the grounds of having a criminal record unless there was a compelling business reason to do so. Kentucky law further requires the employer to prove that the conviction is relevant to the job if refusing to hire is based on a conviction. Applicable only to government departments, the law clearly has a few loopholes.
How to Handle Getting a Job with a DUI Conviction
One of the best things you can do is be honest about the incident. It will undoubtedly come up in an interview, or soon after once a background check is run. Honesty is generally a good light to shine in when making an impression, and if you’re confident, it will show you are ready to move on. When discussing the DUI in an interview, the goal is to make the interviewer feel at ease about the incident. A good, confident impression coupled with a genuine reassurance the DUI was an isolated incident are important keys to landing that job. One DUI is generally easier for an employer to accept than several that point to a potentially destructive pattern of behavior. A DUI is a red flag, but one that can become less important if it occurred a long time ago, if you are otherwise qualified for the position, and if you can paint your DUI into a lesson learned – one that makes you worth taking a chance on.
If you’re still not getting any job offers, perhaps it’s time to attempt a trade of your own. So many of us fantasize about making money our own way without someone looming over us and singling us out. A certain satisfaction can come from self-employment, and it may be a more convenient option if you have multiple convictions. Furthermore, expungement of a DUI arrest or conviction may be possible. This legal process is a way to conceal what’s on your record.
If you are facing a DUI charge, have been convicted of DUI, or have any questions about this topic, you can find out more by discussing it with one of the DUI defense lawyers at Church, Langdon, Lopp, Banet Law. We have years of experience helping people, and we can help you. Based in New Albany, Indiana, we proudly serve communities throughout Kentuckiana, including, but not limited to, Jefferson County, KY; Floyd County, IN; Clark County, IN; and Harrison County, Indiana. Contact us by calling (812) 725-8224 or through our online form.