How Does a DWI Impact My Career?

Confident employee leaving the office with his personal stuff

Sometimes finding a stable source of income and employment can be difficult. We all strive for a career that will provide us with the support that we need, through benefits and salary. After finding a job that provides these things, it is expected that we will do everything in our power to not lose it. However, sometimes mistakes happen that impact our careers. If you are pulled over and charged with a DWI in Missouri, it is important to know how that can change your life.

Will I Lose My Job?

Regardless of the number of offenses you have, a DWI has the potential to severely impact your career. There are many fields or companies that have policies in place that do not allow individuals to work with a DWI. This means that you will ultimately lose your job if you are convicted of these charges.

For example, in careers that require driving, such as operating forklifts, having a DWI is not permissible. You could be viewed as a liability and danger to the company. In other licensed-based positions, such as teaching, you can lose your license and position. However, this is not the case for every job, as some employers will still allow you to work with a DWI charge.

Do I Have To Notify My Employer?

In certain cases, it may not be necessary for you to notify your employer of your DWI offense. However, there are other circumstances in which you will have to have a discussion with your management. For example, you may be ordered to attend a mandated treatment program and required classes. In this situation, you may have to miss work, meaning that you will have to notify your employer. You could also face losing your driver's license, meaning that you may not be able to get to work.

Sometimes an employer will have random background checks. In at-will employment situations, your boss can fire you if they find that you are not adhering to company policies. If they have a rule in place that stipulates that you cannot have DWI charges, you could be fired effective immediately.

What About Future Employment?

If you lose your current job, you will need to consider what you will do in regard to future employment. While it is possible to find a new job, many companies these days will complete a criminal background check. When doing this, they will be able to see your driving record even if it is not a critical component of the position.

How you conduct yourself outside of work can impact an employer's decision to hire you or not. In the case of having a DWI, they could view this offense as an indicator of general irresponsibility and misconduct. Even if you only have one DWI charge, it can prevent you from being selected for hire.

What If I Have a Felony Offense?

The chances of finding a job only reduce when you have multiple DWI charges or a felony conviction. A felony charge cannot be expunged from your record, meaning that you will suffer the consequences of these charges for the remainder of your working days.

Many employers will not hire convicted felons. You will find that the options for employment will greatly diminish with your conviction, even if you have adequate experience and good references.

When Should I Disclose?

Sometimes being honest about your DWI conviction is the best thing you can do in the long run. If you know your employer will complete a background check, take this as an opportunity to be honest about your charges. Let them know that it was a one-time incident and that you have learned since then. You should never lie on your applications and state that you were not charged.

If you are asked about charges in an interview, you can use this time to display that you have progressed since the incident. In fact, you may be able to use this in your favor, letting employers know that you can change even when faced with obstacles and setbacks.

Need Help With DWI Charges?

Are you facing a DWI charge in Springfield, Missouri? The first thing you need to do is contact a Springfield DUI attorney for experienced legal counsel and defense. The team at Cole & Martin Attorneys at Law, LLC is here to help you contest your charges and take the necessary steps to right your wrongs.

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