How DWI Affects Employment

A DWI conviction in North Carolina is inconvenient to say the least. It will result in a lot of time spent in court, a lot of money spent on fees and fines, and many other problems. But even after your trial is over, a DWI can have a significant impact on your life. Not only can it affect your relationships with friends and family, but it can also have a serious effect on your employment status, even if it’s been years since your conviction.

As a North Carolina resident, it’s important to understand not only the dangers of drinking and driving, but how it can affect your current and future jobs. And remember, if you or a loved one have been charged with a DWI, the best way to protect yourself and your rights is to get in touch with the seasoned DWI lawyers at Mulligan Attorneys by calling 910-763-1100.

Telling Your Employer about a DWI

If you are convicted of a DWI in North Carolina, your first step should be figuring out whether you need to report your conviction to your employer. Many employers will spell out guidelines for situations like this within their employee handbooks. If nothing about reporting convictions is written in your handbook, you should weigh the pros and cons of telling your employer.

On the one hand, you may feel that it is none of their business. On the other hand, if they find out you were convicted and willingly withheld that information from them, they may not be as kind as they would have if you had just been upfront and honest about it. At the end of the day, North Carolina is an at-will employment state, meaning that you can be fired by an employer for nearly any reason.

How DWIs May Affect Your Current Job

If your employer learns about your conviction, whether a DWI will have an immediate effect on your job depends somewhat on what type of job you have. For example, those who are employed by a government organization are more likely to be immediately suspended or fired after a DWI conviction. 

Additionally, you may also risk unemployment if you are required to have a professional license in order to do your job. Doctors, nurses, commercial drivers, pilots, and even barbers could risk suspension or revocation of their professional licenses if they are charged with drunk driving.

Finally, even if you don’t immediately lose your professional license and/or your job, you may have to miss so much time from work for court appearances, community service, or substance abuse treatment, that you may lose your job simply because you aren’t able to attend work as scheduled.

Fired for DWI

How DWIs May Affect Your Job Search

If you’ve been convicted of a DWI and you are actively looking for a job, there are definitely some challenges you may face. The biggest issue you’ll encounter is transportation, since most DWI convictions result in some kind of license suspension in North Carolina. You’ll have to learn how to get around without a license, which will probably take some planning to make sure you can look for jobs or be on time for interviews. Or, you can get in touch with Mulligan Attorneys to learn whether you may be eligible for limited driving privileges.

If your career involves driving and your license has been suspended, you may be out of luck, especially if you cannot obtain limited driving privileges. In this scenario, you may need to expand your job search to include new career opportunities that don’t involve driving for work.

Finally, you may have difficulty filling out job applications or new hire paperwork if you do not have a driver’s license number to provide.

How DWIs May Affect Your Future Job

In this day and age, many employers require background checks before they hire a new employee. Your criminal record and your driving record will most likely be included as part of a background check, so potential employers may be able to see if you were convicted of a DWI and lost your license.

Additionally, many job applications in North Carolina have a section where applicants are asked whether or not they’ve been convicted of a crime. While you could choose not to disclose this information, it is likely that your employer will still find out about any convictions, especially if they perform a background check. For this reason, it’s best to be honest and disclose conviction information to a new employer.

If you’ve been convicted of a DWI, it’s a good idea to think about how you may handle this discussion with your employer. You may also consider planning some responses to questions about your conviction, in the event that you are trying to find a new job.

Finally, if you’ve been charged with a DWI, you need to contact the lawyers at Mulligan Attorneys. We can help you through the trial process, determine eligibility for limited driving privileges, and give you the assistance you need to make sure your life and career is disrupted as little as possible during this difficult time.