DUI Affecting Security Clearance

If you have been arrested for DUI or DWI in Maryland, you are probably wondering what consequences you will face if convicted, but immediate thoughts of consequences are usually limited to criminal and administrative penalties.

Will you lose your driver’s license? What if you caused injury to another while driving under the influence? Will you go to jail? These questions are important to consider; however, they are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the repercussions of a DUI arrest.

DUI and Your Job

It is common sense to conclude that an employer will almost always prefer to hire an individual who does not have a criminal record over one who does. An employer wants workers who they can trust. This is even more important in jobs that require a security clearance. In the case of a job that requires a security clearance, a DUI conviction may not only cause you to be passed over if applying for such a position, but if you already hold a position that requires security clearance, a DUI may jeopardize the job you already have.

What Happens to Your Security Clearance?

Having a DUI or even multiple DUIs on your record can have a substantial impact on your current and future employment, especially if you hold a security clearance. There are many positions, especially in government, that require employees to hold a security clearance.

If you are convicted of DUI, the government agency or other employer that you work for may lose faith in your ability to perform your job properly. How do they know that you won’t come in to work while impaired and cause a security breach or reveal classified information to others while intoxicated? Being in such a position is difficult for an employer and they will do whatever is necessary to protect any important or sensitive information; however, each government agency or employer has a different policy regarding employees who are convicted of DUI or DWI. Depending on these policies, a DUI may affect a security clearance occupation in one of the following ways:

  1. You may lose your security clearance completely and be terminated or demoted; this almost always also results in a decrease in pay and perhaps even health benefits;
  2. Your security clearance may remain as is; however, a “strike” may be placed on your employment record and your daily activities closely monitored. A second DUI conviction could result in not only the loss of your security clearance but also your job; or
  3. You may lose your security clearance and your job.

If you lose your job, the likelihood that you will be able to find another comparable position with a DUI on your record is very slim. With the right attorney handling your DUI case from the beginning, however, you may be able to avoid a DUI conviction and save your job.

Protecting Your Professional Future

The ability to financially support yourself and your family is directly tied to your job. All it may take is one DUI to take that away. If you have a sensitive government position or other important occupation that requires a certain level of security clearance, you can help protect your job by retaining the services of an experienced Maryland DUI defense lawyer. At Alpert Schreyer, our aggressive DUI defense attorneys understand how damaging a DUI conviction can be to a person’s professional life and are committed to doing everything in our power to protect you from such repercussions. To learn more about how we may be able to help you keep your security clearance and your job, contact us today at (866) 444-6363 for a free case consultation.