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DUI, license suspension and the effect on your future

An arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol is frightening enough, but it becomes debilitating if you lose your driving privileges. How will you get around? How will you get to work or that job interview? A DUI will have a long and lasting domino effect on your future.

Losing your license

If law enforcement stops you on suspicion of drunk driving and a breath test shows that your blood alcohol concentration level is .08 percent or higher, the officer will take your driver’s license away immediately. The suspension will last for 180 days if you are a first offender.

A pink slip

The law enforcement officer will give you a pink slip of paper that will serve as a temporary license for 30 days. This gives you time to explore your legal options. For example, if you wish to participate in an administrative hearing, your attorney can help you challenge the suspension.

Looking at consequences

Although other penalties for a DUI charge exist, losing your driving privileges may put you in a bind. If the company you work for requires you to drive, you may lose your job because of this brush with the law. If you are interested in a new job, the DUI mark on your record could cause a recruiter to overlook you by in favor of an applicant with a clean record. If you are in school and working toward a state license or certification for a certain career, such as teaching or nursing, a DUI conviction may prevent you from becoming licensed or certified; you would have to choose another line of work altogether.

Two kinds of cases

Your DUI case has two sides: civil, involving the aforementioned administrative hearing, and criminal, which has a different set of legal consequences. In your criminal case, you could lose your driver’s license for a period of nine months to as many as two years. Explore your legal options. A DUI arrest is serious business, especially when you consider how quickly it can block your ability to drive and put both your short- and long-range goals on hold.

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