No one wants to be convicted of driving under the influence (DUI), but every year, almost a million Americans are arrested for the offense. Unfortunately, that means that coping with the long-term effects of a DUI is something many of us will have to learn to do. Those effects range from family problems to financial woes, like an SR-22 requirement, impacting our lives in ways we probably don’t give much thought to when we decide to drink and drive.
One of the long-term effects of a DUI is simply having a criminal record. People who normally follow the law and then end up getting convicted of a DUI after having a few drinks with coworkers may find a criminal record to be highly embarrassing. A criminal record is something that will follow you for many years, keeping you from attaining certain desires. While it may be possible to expunge your record after a certain period of time has passed, doing so usually costs money and is not guaranteed.
Employment is another area that can be affected long-term by a DUI conviction. It is not uncommon for people to lose their jobs after a DUI, as many companies see it as a sign of social disregard and irresponsibility. The higher you are in the company heirarchy, the more your DUI conviction can be seen as damaging to the company’s reputation. If you have a job that is dependent upon driving, you will likely find yourself unemployed. When trying to find a new job, DUI convictions are not looked upon favorably during the hiring process.
Of course, coping with the long-term effects of a DUI is difficult, but it can’t be avoided once the ball is rolling. Expect your auto insurance costs to increase dramatically and you may find that your current company cancels your policy. Most people convicted of a DUI pay two or three times more for their insurance premiums than people without a DUI on their driving records. Of course, this may not be an issue until you are allowed to legally drive, again. Sometimes, a DUI can result in having your driving privileges suspended or revoked for years.
Your reputation is another thing to keep in mind. Coping with the long-term effects of a DUI conviction often means having to endure people thinking you are an alcoholic. While it is possible to get arrested for a DUI after only a few drinks, most people don’t see it that way. Some of your own family members may eye you suspiciously whenever you drink any alcohol after a DUI. How one copes with the long-term effects varies for everyone, but one thing is for sure: a DUI conviction will change your life.