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DUIs & Employment Background Checks: What You Should Know


One of the biggest reasons you should fight to avoid a conviction of driving under the influence (DUI) is to avoid the consequences of having a criminal record. A DUI conviction, even an impaired driving charge that doesn’t end with a sentence, can negatively affect your career. This adverse effect can particularly harm offenders who hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) or who usually drive as part of their jobs.

Employers can choose to conduct background checks on current or potential employees for any number of reasons. Depending on how the background check is performed, it could expose DUI charges or convictions. However, the limits of what an employer can learn depend on state laws. In New Jersey, an employer must first get your authorization in writing to obtain a background report on you. Likewise, they are encouraged by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to consider the circumstances of your conviction and how it might affect your trustworthiness as an employee.

Commercial drivers who are convicted of a DUI, even in their own passenger vehicles, are typically prohibited from driving in a professional capacity for at least a year, if it is their first DUI offense. A second or subsequent can result in a lifetime ban from holding a CDL, which means a background check will prevent you from working as a commercial motor vehicle driver.

Likewise, having a DUI on your record might demonstrate to a potential employer your inability to control your actions or make sound decisions. You will likely have a chance to explain your case to your prospective employer, but this conversation might not change an employer’s mind.

Make sure you do your best to avoid ending up in this situation. If you’re accused of a DUI, talk to our skilled Bergen County DUI attorney as soon as possible. We can take a look at your case and offer experienced recommendations about your best course of legal action.

Contact us at (201) 574-7919 or fill out our online form to schedule your free case consultation today.

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