A DUI conviction’s impact on employment
Many individuals that come to Chestney & Sullivan for help have one main question:
Should I fight my Georgia DUI charges?
Certainly, this is no easy decision. The best DUI attorneys invest a lot of resources into every case to provide the most vigorous defense possible, often resulting in significant legal fees. And the process of aggressively fighting driving under the influence charges can takes months, and sometimes years.
When compared with the relative cost of a guilty plea fine and probation, it may seem “easier” just plead guilty and move on. However, it’s the moving on part that too often doesn’t receive proper consideration and, in particular, what a DUI conviction can do to current and future employment. Also, it may well be worth it to at least have a DUI trial attorney with Chestney & Sullivan review the facts of your case for possible defenses. After thoroughly investigating and reviewing your case, you can make an informed decision about how to move forward. DUI cases can get quite technical and is by far one of the most litigated offenses in Georgia. Cases that may seem to be a “lost cause” on its face may be very defensible after a thorough investigation.
Below, we will answer some common questions about the potential problems that a DUI conviction can have on your job.
Will a DUI conviction affect my current employment?
It depends. For jobs that require driving, either by professional drivers or as part of out-of-town travel (e.g. rental cars), a DUI conviction will almost certainly cause problems. But those aren’t the only instances. In the past, companies were mostly concerned with criminal convictions that occurred prior to employment. However, there has been a trend in recent years to look at trouble with the law that occurs after the initial hiring date. For example, many organizations now make employees complete an annual disclosure statement about criminal convictions, as part of their “moral character” requirement. Some organizations will conduct a background check before a promotion takes place. For those with a DUI conviction, they are faced with the decision to not disclose the information (almost certainly grounds for termination), or disclose it and face potential disciplinary action.
Do I have to disclose a Georgia DUI conviction on an employment application even if it’s not a felony?
In most cases, yes. The majority of job applications we see these days ask applicants to disclose any criminal convictions, regardless of whether they are felonies or misdemeanors. In some instances, applications are now asking not only about convictions, but also about arrests or current charges pending against them. Failure to properly disclose information on an application can prevent you from being hired by a potential employer and may even be grounds for termination if the employer discovers the arrest or conviction.
Will a current or potential employer find out about your Georgia DUI conviction?
Almost certainly if they want to. Most employers will run a criminal background check on job applicants as part of the hiring process. Some employers even run a Motor Vehicle Report (driver’s license history) as part of the hiring process or periodically during employment. The growth of personal information availability online has made the discovery of this type of information very easy.
The DUI defense attorneys at Chestney & Sullivan can help you evaluate the best course of action after an impaired driving-related arrest. We have years of experience representing employees in all fields, including doctors, stockbrokers, real estate professionals, salespeople, professional drivers, small business owners and others.
Contact us today at 404.816.8777 to speak with a skilled Atlanta DUI attorney. A DUI trial attorney is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to discuss your case.