Can a DUI Conviction ruin your future? I am asked this question often. It usually goes something like this: If I’m convicted of Driving Under the Influence or some other drunk driving offense such as Reckless Driving Alcohol-Related or “wet reckless”, what will be the likely impact on my future?

Usually, this question is asked by clients who are in or planning to enter college or university, or clients who are in a professional degree program (like future nurses or future doctors) and who are concerned about the effect of the DUI arrest on their professional life and future. I’m also frequently asked this question by regular folks as well – you don’t have to be an aspiring brain surgeon to have your future torqued by a DUI conviction.

Five Ways a Delaware DUI Conviction Can Ruin Your Future

Disregarding the possible jail time, stiff fines, and loss of driver’s license, here are some of the ways a DUI conviction creates collateral damage on people’s lives and futures:

First and foremost, your car insurance rate is going to go up. Having a DUI conviction on your record tells the insurance companies that statistically, you are more likely to be involved in a car accident and they need to set your premium accordingly. Some car insurance companies have dropped people entirely as a result of criminal DUI convictions, particularly those involving accidents.

Second, a DUI or drunk driving conviction could prevent you from getting into college. Many people in Delaware apply to the University of Delaware in Newark, DE. The Admission Department at UD (as it’s known locally) uses the Common Application. According to a March 10, 2017 article titled “Still Asking About Crime and Discipline”, the Common Application asks the question “Have you ever been adjudicated guilty or convicted of a misdemeanor or felony?” If you were convicted of DUI in Delaware, even if it was only a First Offense DUI, the answer to that question would be yes.

Third, a DUI conviction could prevent you from getting a job. In today’s tight job market, employers are picky about who they hire. A criminal conviction on your record will not give you a leg up against the competition if the prospective employer finds out. In other words, if the company narrows their job candidates down to two people and they need to rule one out, the candidate with the criminal conviction will probably be passed over, and the job will go to the candidate with the cleaner record.

Fourth, a DUI conviction can prevent you from being licensed to perform a trade or profession. Let’s say you are taking the CDL course to become an Over the Road truck driver. You have a friend or family member that has a connection at a trucking company and has set you up with a great, high paying job. What’s going to happen to your CDL and your job prospects if you get a DUI conviction?

Or let’s say you are just finishing nursing school and you are about ready to apply for licensure through the Delaware Division of Professional Regulation. The Board will complete a criminal background check on you.

Fifth, you could lose your job because of a DUI conviction. Some employers have a mandatory termination policy for employees convicted of felonies and misdemeanors such as Delaware Driving Under the Influence. If you are wondering whether your employer has a mandatory termination provision or rule, check your employment documents – your employment agreement, your employer’s handbook, collective bargaining agreement, and other written policies and procedures published by the employer.

Five Ways a Delaware DUI Conviction Can Ruin Your Future

If you have been arrested on charges involving Driving Under the Influence (DUI) in Delaware, whether the basis for the charge is alcohol or drugs, or Boating Under the Influence in Delaware, or any other related criminal offense, you should take the case against you very seriously. You can rest assured that I will. I offer consultations in DUI and other alcohol- and drug-related crimes in the State of Delaware, so please feel free to contact me before your arrest derails your life!