One of the greatest concerns for many people facing a drunk driving charge is its potential impact on their career. Even if you are found not guilty, simply being arrested and charged can affect your reputation in the workplace and, in some instances, lead to repercussions.
This is one of the first questions many people ask after being arrested for drunk driving, and the answer will depend on the type of work you do. For example, if you are a commercial driver’s license (CDL) holder or otherwise drive for a living, a drunk driving arrest will almost certainly impact your career. Reporting an OWI charge to your employer is generally required in these situations.
Other employers may stipulate in their contract, employee handbook, or policy manual that employees must disclose any criminal charges, including drunk driving. For example, military personnel must report arrests to their chain of command.
Other situations in which you may be required to report a drunk driving arrest include:
If your job does not require you to report an arrest, then it will be your decision whether to inform your employer of a drunk driving charge or not. In some cases, telling your boss may result in undue hostility or an otherwise negative working environment, which would be especially unfortunate if you were later found not guilty of the charge.
On the other hand, being honest and upfront with your employer could instill a sense of trust and ultimately strengthen your working relationship. If your coworkers or superiors found out about the arrest by other means, it could look like you were trying to hide or cover up the charge, which could have detrimental effects.