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How can a DUI affect your chances of getting a job?

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You've made a serious error in judgment and have been arrested and convicted for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. You've paid the penalties, including fines, required classes and possibly some jail time. However, that doesn't mean that it's all behind you. It can come back to haunt you in ways you didn't anticipate.

If you seek a new job and a potential employer does a background check, they may see it on your record and determine that you're not the right person for the job. If your line of work involves driving, the consequences of a DUI conviction, or even a charge, to your career can be more serious.

Connecticut is one of 14 states that requires employers to prove how a conviction for a particular crime is relevant to a job if they refuse to hire someone because of it. Of course, employers can decide not to hire an applicant without giving a specific reason.

There are also federal laws that address the use of criminal convictions in denying jobs to candidates. Under the Civil Rights Act, people can't be denied a job because of a conviction unless there's a compelling business reason for that denial. Again, however, employers don't have to provide a reason why one applicant is chosen over another.

It may be possible to clear a DUI charge or conviction from your record to help improve your chances for future employment. An experienced Connecticut criminal defense attorney can advise you on how soon after the incident you can do that and what steps need to be taken.

Source: FindLaw, "DUI and Employment Background Checks," accessed April 15, 2016

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