Employment Consequences of a DUI or Drug Arres
After a DUI or drug arrest, you could face employment consequences that greatly affect your life. When you are already facing a legal case and possible imprisonment, facing issues at your job could feel overwhelming. Know your rights and know what to expect after your arrest.
Some employers could care less about your arrest history, while it is very important to others. This often comes up in unexpected ways. For example, your employer may care about your arrest because it makes you miss work. If you get arrested and spend time in jail waiting to be charged in court, you might be late to work or miss a day or two. Further, you might have trouble getting to work because your license was seized by the police. Your employer might write you up for a “no-show” or outright fire you. When you are able to contact family, friends, or a lawyer, ask them to notify your employer that you need to take a few days off. Hopefully, this will allow you to hold onto your job while you deal with the arrest.
In addition, some employers care about their employees’ arrest history because it may affect their ability to do their jobs. For example, many public employers such as police departments place their employees on administrative leave if they get arrested. This practice unfortunately means that your employment could be in jeopardy even though you have not been convicted of a crime. While the courts have to respect the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, employers do not necessarily follow the same rules.
If you are convicted of a DUI or a drug crime, you could face additional employment consequences. The conviction will go on your permanent criminal record and show up in background checks. This could affect your ability to get a job in the future. If you work in a job that requires a professional license, your licensing board may suspend or revoke your license. Further, you may not be able to get your driver’s license back. This could impact getting to work every day and also impact your ability to do your job if you must drive company vehicles for work.
Generally, you have no obligation to report a DUI or drug arrest to your employer. Some employers, depending on the industry, may require reporting. If you are convicted of a DUI or a drug crime, though, you may have to report it. Your employer may have a policy that requires you to report criminal convictions. Or the conviction may affect your ability to do your job if you have to serve time in jail or prison, or if you work in a licensed profession.
Because of the potentially severe employment consequences of a DUI or drug arrest and conviction, you need to seek legal help for your case. As soon as possible after the arrest, reach out to a lawyer to discuss your rights and options.
Have you been charged with a DUI in Oklahoma? Clint Patterson, Esq., of Patterson Law Firm, a former Tulsa prosecutor now using his trial experience and expert-level knowledge of DUI science to defend drivers, helps Oklahomans like you. To schedule a case evaluation, visit Patterson Law Firm online or call Clint’s office at (918) 550-9175.