Across the United States, states take the crime of drinking and driving seriously. This crime can cause the intoxicated driver to end up in jail while watching their driver’s license being taken away. Expensive fines, community service, and probation are also part of the negative consequences a person suffers from drunk driving. While the penalties for getting convicted of a DUI are tough, a lot of people do not consider the social consequences they will face from a drunk driving conviction. This article will deal with the social implications that walk hand in hand with a DUI conviction. Please read on.
The Social Consequences of a Drunk Driving Conviction
- Your License Will Be Suspended Or Restricted: Any person who gets convicted for a crime related to driving under the influence of alcohol will either have restrictions put on their driving privileges or have their license taken away for a period of time. An individual who does not have a driver’s license is going to find it difficult to get to work, appointments with their doctor and family events. If you do not have a license, it means you are likely going to have to be dependent on family members and friends for rides to work. This can cause a strain on relationships and friendships.
- You Will Have A Criminal Record: After a person has been convicted of drunk driving, they will have a criminal record. This record is permanent and cannot be expunged or erased under current law. A person who has a criminal record can find it harder to rent apartments and get a job. Convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol are serious criminal charges. These types of convictions result in having to follow the strict requirements of probation.
- Relationship Problems: DUI convictions can cause or ruin family relationships and personal relationships. Family members will be upset at the loss of money caused by a drunk driving conviction. Friends and family members will be agitated with having to drive their loved ones and friends around town for work and errands. Since probation is almost always required after a person is sentenced for drunk driving, family members and friends will be required to drive you to test for drugs and alcohol. They will also have to take you to your required substance abuse classes.
- Society Will Look At You As A Person Who Makes Horrible Decisions: This is another social implication that goes with being convicted of drunk driving. Society will view a person convicted of a DUI as being a person who is irresponsible when it comes to making decisions. If you are hoping to be promoted at work, your dreams can be crushed when your employee finds you have been busted for drunk driving. Many supervisors cannot risk promoting someone who makes bad decisions and might have an addiction to alcohol.
- Loss of Scholarship Programs: A lot of universities will not take students who have a drunk driving conviction on their record. If you were already given a scholarship, it may be denied or revoked. Many universities require applicants to disclose any criminal history and do their own criminal background checks.
- Increase of Auto Insurance Rates: After a person has been convicted for a DUI, their insurance company will soon find out and raise your insurance premiums. A drunk driving conviction moves a person up into the high-risk category by companies. In some cases, insurance companies may even suspend your coverage. This isn’t the only financial cost of a DUI you may suffer
Being convicted of drunk driving will bring many life-changing issues that are difficult to deal with. As we have seen from this article, besides facing jail and having to pay high fines and possible jail time, a DUI also results in many negative social implications such as negative judgments, relationships under strain, difficulty getting a job, college scholarships, and loss of driving privileges. If you decide to drink, be smart, do not drink and drive! Call a cab or have a designated driver and if you do get caught drinking and driving make sure you hire an experienced drunk driving criminal defense lawyer.
Bio: Shawn Haff is the owner of The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan. He received his J.D. from Cooley Law School in 2009 and currently represents individuals charged with criminal offenses like drug possession, drunk driving, and criminal sexual conduct.