Should You Hide A DUI On A Job Application?
A charge of driving under the influence can impact every aspect of your life, including the search for a new job. When you are applying for a job, you have to decide whether or not disclosing the DUI is necessary. If you have been charged with a DUI, here is what you need to know about the charge and its impact on your job search.
Do You Have to Disclose the Charge?
Depending on the position you are applying for, the question of whether or not you have a DUI could possibly be included on the application. If it is, whether or not you have to disclose the DUI depends largely on if you have been charged or convicted.
Applications typically ask if you have a conviction. A conviction means that you either pled guilty to the charge or you were found guilty. Either way, if you are asked on an application if you have a DUI conviction, the appropriate answer is "yes."
However, if you have only been arrested and charged with the DUI, disclosing it might not be necessary. Since the case has not been resolved, only an arrest will show on your record. Whether or not you want to disclose the arrest is up to you. If you are in the trial process and end up being convicted, you should let your employer know. If they run a background check and see the conviction, they will think you were dishonest on your application.
What Can You Do?
If you have been convicted, it is important that you complete the terms of your agreement. For instance, if you received probation, then pay the fines, report to your probation officer as ordered, and complete any additional terms required. Once you have finished your punishment, you can take steps to either hide or expunge your record.
Depending on the state in which you live, you can file a request for non-disclosure with the court. The non-disclosure does not remove the conviction, but it will not appear in background searches conducted by private organizations.
If you live in a state that allows for expungement, check your state's laws to determine what you need to have the charge permanently removed from your record. In most instances, expungement is a one-time opportunity. Any future criminal acts cannot be removed.
If you have not been convicted, work with a DUI attorney to get a plea bargain for a lower charge. If you were not driving under the influence, the attorney can help you build your defense and argue your case in court.