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How a DUI charge plays into a background check

If you drive for a living, either with a CDL (Commercial Driver's License) or merely with your standard license, one thing that you may be worried about is getting a DUI. After all, charges for drunk driving could end up making it harder for you to get a job in the future. How do these charges play into a background check?

One important thing to understand on the federal level, meaning that it applies both within New Hampshire and in all other states, is that there is a big difference in the way that arrests and convictions are reported. This is something that falls under the jurisdiction of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, or the FCRA.

The FCRA does allow convictions to stay on your record forever. Of course, if they are expunged legally, they could disappear from your public record. This is possible for some crimes and not for others. However, the important thing to take away from this is that the FCRA does not automatically take a conviction off of your record.

What it does, though, is to mandate that an arrest has to be removed after seven years. If you are arrested on a suspected DUI charge, you fight that charge, and you are not convicted, your employer will not even be able to see the arrest eight years later. It is not something that you have to bring up, and it should not stand in the way of getting a new job.

To keep your chances of employment as high as possible, make sure that you know what stays on your record, what does not, and what legal steps can be taken to remove a charge.

Source: FindLaw, "DUI and Employment Background Checks" Nov. 10, 2014

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