It wasn’t your intention, but you had one too many. After being pulled over on the way home, you found yourself at the police station, waiting for your lawyer to arrive. While a regrettable action on your part, is it really a big deal?
The fact is that an arrest for driving under the influence or impaired driving is a big deal. If convicted, your life will be affected in a number of ways. Unless your lawyer is able to come up with a way to get those DUI charges lifted, the consequence will follow you around for a long time. Even if you can keep the jail time to a minimum, things will not be the same for quite a few years. Here’s what you can expect to happen.
You Now Have a Criminal Record
If anyone has ever told you that driving under the influence is not that big of a deal, think again. A conviction will ensure that you have a criminal record for the rest of your life. From this time forward, anyone who conducts a background check will find that record.
This even extends to your personal life. Owing to the ease of conducting background checks these days, even people that you’ve just met and want to know better may decide to look into your background before getting too chummy. While some will not consider the one conviction a deal breaker, others may decide they would rather spend time with other people.
Future Employment Options Will Be Limited
Many bosses will not fire people because of a recent conviction. Even so, the reality of the drunk driving (DUI) violation could have some impact on your job prospects in the future. Certain positions that you may hope to receive one day may now be out of your reach for good. The reason is that those positions will need to go to someone who does not have a criminal record of any kind.
If you’re happy with your current job and can see yourself doing it for the rest of your working life, this may not be a big drawback. However, if your employer should go under and there’s the need to find a new job, be prepared for some doors to close the moment that a background check is done.
Your Credit Will Suffer
Credit scores are impacted by criminal convictions. It’s not just about your ability to get a credit card. It also has to do with the interest rates and terms you can get for a car loan or a mortgage. It’s even about being able to borrow money for home repairs or upgrades, or take out a personal loan so you can go on a vacation next year. While you may still be able to get credit or a loan, expect the rates to be higher. That’s because your criminal record indicates that doing business with you is a little riskier.
Driving Privileges Disappear or are Limited For Some Time
With DUI convictions, you’re likely to lose driving privileges for a time. In some cases, it may be for a long time. Don’t be surprised if you find out that using public transport, ride shares, and other means of getting around are not as simple or as convenient as being able to hop in your car and go when the mood strikes.
The bottom line is that you should take an arrest for DUI seriously. Call a lawyer at once and begin planning the defense. What happens next could make all the difference to the way your life goes from this point on.