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Can I Get Fired for an Oakland DUI?

Were you recently arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in Oakland or anywhere else in the East Bay? If so, and this is your first DUI arrest, you’ll have a lot of questions, such as, “Will I get fired if I’m convicted of DUI?” We bring this up because it’s one of the questions that we get asked a lot.

Suppose you didn’t fight your DUI and the state found you guilty. If you are convicted, you would face the following penalties, assuming there were no “aggravating circumstances,” such as bodily injury or death:

  • AA classes
  • DUI School for 3 to 9 months
  • Community service
  • Up to 5 years’ probation
  • Up to 6 months in jail
  • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • Up to 10-month driver’s license suspension

Considering the above penalties, can you get fired for a DUI? It depends on several factors, such as whether or not you go to jail (some people get probation in lieu of jail), and how your particular employer feels about you and DUI.

For example, your employer may consider you such an asset to the company that they’re willing to overlook the DUI; however, if you’re sent to jail for the next six months, your employer may need to fill your position right away.

Essentially, your job may not be there when you get back, especially if your employer isn’t in the position to hire you back when you get out of jail. Now there’s another issue – some employers frown heavily upon DUIs or any criminal conviction for that matter.

If you drive for a living, or if you work directly with children, or if you hold a professional license, a DUI can be a deal breaker in your employer’s eyes. In certain fields, employers believe that DUIs are simply “bad for business,” and therefore will let employees go for DUI convictions.

California is an At-Will Employment State

California, like the vast majority of the states, is an “at-will” employment state, which means employers reserve the right to discharge employees for any reason, with the exception of discrimination. Unfortunately, a DUI does not count as discrimination under California’s employment laws.

So, if your employer does not like the fact that you’re convicted of DUI, they have every right to terminate the employment relationship and they are not required to explain why. This brings us back to the question: How does your employer feel about employees getting convicted of DUI?

A DUI conviction typically affects the following types of jobs:

  • Teaching
  • Medical professionals
  • Jobs in politics
  • Driving jobs
  • Jobs in law enforcement
  • Real estate sales jobs
  • Commercial trucking
  • Taxi, Uber and Lyft jobs
  • Jobs in the military
  • Jobs requiring a security clearance
  • Jobs requiring a professional license (e.g. notary and real estate license)
  • Government contracting jobs (needing a security clearance)

If you are facing DUI charges in the East Bay, the best way to protect your job and your career is to hire an Oakland DUI attorney from the Law Office of Nabiel C. Ahmed. Call today for a free consultation!

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