What a DUI Conviction Could Mean for Your Future
Most people are aware of the negative consequences of getting a DUI conviction on their record. That is, they understand the likelihood of seeing their insurance rates climb Mount Everest, getting stuck in some sort of re-education program, the court costs, and the possibility of having their license revoked or restricted. However, these are just the immediate downside results of a DUI. Many of the most unwelcome consequences often come afterwards, which is why it’s a good idea to contact a top DUI defense lawyer.
One of the most egregious consequences of a drunk driving conviction is in the increasing practice of requiring breathalyzer interlock systems on your vehicle, for a period that may last for years, if it was a serious DUI. To start or continue operating the vehicle, one must blow strong breaths into the inlet pipe of the system at the start of the driving process, as well as random intervals thereafter.
These systems are expensive to install, bought from your own pocket, and have monthly maintenance fees that serve as a continuing drain on your finances. They also act as a constant, passive monitor for your driving habits. If you drive drunk again, the system will rat you out to the authorities. This means you violated the terms of your sentence, and you go back to jail, or have some other negative impacts imposed.
Another down-the-road problem is that many companies do not let anyone with a DUI drive a company-owned vehicle. As a pair of quick examples, this could end the employment of people, such as delivery drivers or insurance adjusters. Even if the company is still amenable, their insurance carrier may not be. Also, people subject to interlock restrictions must have them in every vehicle they operate. Few companies have any interest in seeing one of their units retrofitted in this manner, especially when such systems apply to everyone who drives the car, not just the one person it was intended to monitor.
Foreign and domestic travelers may encounter significant problems as a result of a DUI. It is not uncommon for our northern neighbor, Canada, to refuse entry to those convicted of DUI offenses. Other countries also frown on tourists with such things on their records. As for renting a car at the airport, you may get lucky, or you may not.
The problem with many of these ultimate consequences of a DUI is that they are not going to go away, ever. Even after you served your sentence and paid your debt to society, these things follow you around for the rest of your life. Sometimes, they aren’t noticed. Other times, they crop up in a way that causes the greatest possible humiliation and inconvenience. You never know, but the shadow is with you forever. Once something is on the Internet or in the government databases, there is no permanent escape, short of moving to a desert island.
There is one last thing to consider about what a DUI conviction could mean to your future. DUI convictions are cumulative. The first one is bad. The second one is worse. The third one could get you an automatic year or more in prison, no matter what the circumstances were. These are only some of the potential pitfalls of getting yourself into DUI trouble.
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