Over the past few years, California has upped the ante with new legislation for those choosing to drive while under the influence or DUI.
In 2010, California legislated changes to the existing DUI laws which included the installation of an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) to deter repeat offenders from driving if their alcohol content is over the legal range. The following year, the state expanded the authority of the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to immediately suspend operating privileges for drivers suspected of a DUI and for longer periods of time.
Although there are additional California laws addressing the issue of driving while under the influence there is little guidance regarding possible long-term DUI consequences. So what happens to the many otherwise conscientious drivers with a previously clean driving record who are now facing the fallout of a DUI conviction? For those who find themselves within this category, even after all the legal ramifications have been satisfied, a DUI conviction can undermine many future opportunities and quality of life.
Such consequences may persuade drivers to think twice before having “one for the road” and before getting behind the wheel.
Revocation of Driver’s License
In California, the revocation of a driver’s operating privileges can be anywhere from 30 days up to one year. Losing this type of independence can be stressful. Simple errands become major events, and attending family and social outings become more challenging. For those without access to public transportation, the “Plan B” for commuting to work can become a daily nightmare.
Auto Insurance Coverage Repercussions
Once convicted of a DUI, your insurance coverage may be threatened. Your insurance company may triple your current rate, and could possibly revoke or deny the renewal of coverage. Also, DUI offenders are required to complete an SR-22 certificate of insurance, forever branding you as a member of the DUI club.
Employment and Professional Relationships
Your current position may also be highly affected by your recent conviction. As mentioned above, transportation may impede your performance and numerous court dates, possible jail time and community service commitments may severely interfere with your work performance, potentially leading to the loss of your current position. Not only are employers wary of hiring or maintaining employment for those with a DUI conviction, a DUI conviction can seriously affect how your colleagues perceive you.
Disclosure and Background Checks
If you would happen to lose your current position due to a recent DUI conviction, the job search may also prove more difficult than usual. Employers often ask applicants to disclose any misdemeanor or felony charge or conviction, and, in today’s world, many employers will not hire a candidate until a background check has been completed.
Psychological Issues and Personal Relationships
For those dealing with a recent DUI arrest or conviction may find themselves riddled with anxiety over how family and friends will perceive the situation. Self-esteem issues may arise, and the offender may become irritated and resentful of those “prying” into their personal life.
Consequences for College-Bound Offenders
Although a simple DUI conviction is not usually a felony offense, some higher education institutions will deny entrance to those with a DUI. Scholarships may also be denied or revoked. It is also wise not to hide the truth as many schools are now conducting background checks on prospective students.
Access to financial aid may also be limited or ultimately denied. The final decision weighs heavily on whether or not the student is seeking federal student aid or a personal scholarship, whether the student was incarcerated, and whether or not the DUI resulted in a felony conviction and incurred associated drug charges.
If you are currently facing DUI charges, you need a strong legal advocate in your corner. San Jose DUI Defense attorney Thomas Nicholas Cvietkovich is that legal advocate. Handling over 4,000 cases, Attorney Cvietkovich understands not only the legal recourse but the implications this conviction can have on your future. Call the Law Offices of Thomas Nicholas Cvietkovich today to schedule a free consultation.