After receiving a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), one concern you might have is the potential ramifications on your employment. If you’re a Virginia resident, you might be wondering, “Can I get fired for a DUI in Virginia?”
The experienced Virginia attorneys at Buczek Carpenter, PC, are focusing on criminal defense and family law, and we are here to guide you through the ramifications of a DUI on your employment.
Virginia is an “at-will” employment state. This means that, in general, either the employer or the employee can end the employment relationship at any time, for any reason, or even for no reason.
A DUI arrest or conviction is not an automatic ground for dismissal, but it might influence your employment in the following ways.
For many professions, driving is a fundamental component of the job. Sales representatives, truck drivers, deliverers, and many others spend the majority of their workdays on the road. A DUI conviction, especially one that leads to a suspended license, can severely hamper your ability to perform these duties.
In such instances, employers might deem it necessary to reassign, demote, or even terminate employees who can no longer fulfill their roles due to driving restrictions. Also, the cost of insuring an employee with a DUI on their record might skyrocket, further pressuring your employer’s decision.
Holding a professional license comes with an inherent responsibility to maintain certain ethical and legal standards. A DUI conviction can put this in jeopardy.
For instance, commercial drivers with a DUI may lose their commercial driving privileges, rendering them unfit for their roles. Likewise, healthcare professionals like doctors or nurses could face disciplinary actions from their licensing boards, potentially affecting their ability to practice.
Every company operates with a set of guidelines and policies that its employees must adhere to. Some companies maintain strict policies concerning criminal convictions. Even if a DUI doesn’t directly interfere with your job duties, simply having that conviction on your record might clash with company policy. This can result in disciplinary actions, including possible termination.
If you’re facing potential employment consequences due to a DUI, there are a few steps you can take:
- Understand Your Company’s Policies: Always be familiar with your employer’s handbook or policies regarding arrests and convictions.
- Seek Legal Representation: Before making any decisions or statements, consult with an experienced attorney. Buczek Carpenter can advise you on your rights and the best course of action.
- Challenge the DUI: Not every DUI arrest leads to a conviction. With Buczek Carpenter’s help, you may be able to challenge the evidence, question the arrest procedure, or negotiate a lesser charge.
During the aftermath of a DUI, the stakes are high, both legally and professionally. That’s why you need to have experienced legal counsel on your side.
At Buczek Carpenter, we’ve dedicated our practice to serving Virginia residents in their times of need. Whether you’re facing a DUI charge or dealing with other criminal defense and family law issues, our team is here to help.
If you or someone you know is dealing with a DUI in Virginia, don’t wait. Contact Buczek Carpenter, PC, or call (540) 944-4343 for a consultation. Your future might depend on it.