Like many people in California, you may be always on the lookout for the ideal job, putting in your time with your current job until the right situation comes along. Maybe you are taking classes or working toward a degree so you will be ready when it happens.
On the other hand, maybe you have the perfect job now. You enjoy the work, make good money and have opportunities for advancement. You may have even developed friendships with your co-workers. What you may not have realized is how a drunk driving conviction can affect all these things.
Transportation and the issue of perceptions
Even if you have all the education and qualifications for a job, a hiring manager is likely to choose a similarly qualified applicant with a clean record over someone with a DUI. While many industries no longer ask if you have a criminal conviction during the hiring process, managers for certain jobs must know about your record before they hire you, for example:
- Driving jobs such as trucking, delivery and bus driver
- Jobs that involve frequent driving such as construction, sales or regional management
- Jobs that require the use of a company car
- Industries that are covered by insurance companies that prohibit the employment of workers with DUI convictions for the sake of liability
- Nursing and other medical professionals
- Work that involves children, such as teaching or daycare
- Jobs that require professional certification, such as real estate
Even if none of these things applies to the kind of work you do, on a practical level, the court will likely suspend your license. This means months of bumming rides from friends either to get to work or to keep appointments for job interviews. You can always use cabs, Uber or public transportation, but this can get quite costly, especially if you are like most people whose average commute to work is more than 30 minutes.
You may also find yourself arriving late for work or having to take days off to complete your community service, attend court-mandated counseling or serve any jail sentence you may receive for your DUI conviction. This will not improve the perception your boss and co-workers have about you, especially considering the stigma attached to drunk driving. Losing your job or struggling to find work will only add to the financial burden a DUI can bring. The best course of action is to work to avoid the conviction.