The penalties for drunk driving in Florida can be significant. People can end up in prison, paying hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines and/or losing their driver’s licenses. There are also often secondary consequences for criminal convictions related to drunk driving.
Many people will notice a significant financial impact if they plead guilty or get convicted at trial. Part of the financial impact of their charges may be that they have negative consequences for their career. There are multiple ways in which a driving under the influence (DUI) charge in Florida could affect your profession, depending on your employer’s policies and what career path you pursued.
You could lose your commercial license
If you operate a commercial vehicle at your job, you need to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). A DUI offense while working would obviously affect your eligibility to retain your CDL. You don’t even need to break the law while working. If you get arrested for a DUI in your own vehicle, that could also end your eligibility for a CDL.
You may struggle to perform your job the way you did before
Even if you don’t operate a commercial vehicle at work, you might have to drive daily or at least occasionally for your work responsibilities. If you manage a restaurant, you may need to drive to the bank to get change for the cash registers. If you work in human resources, you might help transport workers to job sites or deliver them to licensing exams.
Your employer won’t be able to rely on you to drive for your work when you lose your driver’s license, and they may not agree to pay a higher insurance rate necessary to cover you when you have a DUI on your record.
Your employer might fire you
Even if your job doesn’t involve driving in any context, your employer might terminate you because they have a zero-tolerance policy for criminal activity. The terms in your employment contract and employee handbook might give your employer the option of summarily terminating your work arrangements over a conviction that has nothing to do with your job.
When you realize that a DUI offense could affect your career, possibly for years to come, you may see the value in defending yourself. Learning more about DUI charges can help those accused of impaired driving move on with their lives.