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How a DUI can affect your career prospects

Most people’s career paths come with a few speed bumps. In some cases, that speed bump could be a DUI conviction. If it was a one-time mistake, the charge might only provide minor setbacks.

While a DUI charge can stay on someone’s record for many years, that doesn’t mean it will negatively impact everyone’s job prospects. However, if you have the goal of becoming a medical professional, lawyer, architect, educator or engineer, these professions require a license to practice. Depending on the circumstances, a licensing board in any of these fields could reject you for having a DUI on your record. These career paths are competitive and typically have strict requirements regarding a person’s criminal history and moral character.

Background checks can also pose challenges

Most employers conduct background checks before bringing on prospective hires. While they may ask about your DUI, you can ease their concerns by being honest and reflective about your experience:

  • Tell them you received a charge if asked.
  • Talk about how you learned from the experience.
  • Discuss how you will never make the same mistake again.
  • Tell them that it was a one-time mistake and won’t impact your commitment to the business or your job performance.

A DUI doesn’t have to stick with you forever

A DUI can undoubtedly raise a red flag for employers. While a conviction could limit the career prospects of some, that doesn’t mean every employer will look down on you for a one-time mistake. For those facing a DUI charge, a criminal defense attorney could mean the difference between a future full of opportunities and a conviction.