DUI, or Driving Under the Influence, can cost you money, your driving privileges, even your freedom. If you are caught driving with a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or more, you can be charged with a DUI, and it will go on your driving record.
Just one DUI conviction can cost around $5,000 in court costs and other fees. Once you get one, the conviction can stay on your driving record for a very long time, affecting whether or not you can get auto insurance, and hiking the price way up if you do find a policy. A DUI on your driving record could also affect your ability to get a job if you work in a field that requires you to drive.
Everyone thinks that a DUI conviction will be erased off of your record after a certain number of years, but this is not the case. Unless you take the action to have your DUI, or multiple DUI’s expunged from your driving record, your DUI’s could stay on there indefinitely.
There is a certain amount of time that a DUI is supposed to stay on your record before you can pay the fee to have it expunged. The amount of time varies by state. In most states, a DUI conviction will only stay on your record for 7-10 years. In Florida, a first conviction is on your record for 75 years!! Getting your DUI expunged from your record also generally depends on whether or not you rack up any more driving violations in the meantime. This means if you have multiple DUI’s, you may never be able to get your driving record back to normal.
However, the first step to getting your driving record back to normal if you have multiple DUI’s is to check out the DUI laws for your state. Keep in mind that your criminal record and your DUI record are not the same. In some cases, the judge may decide to downgrade your charges on your criminal record to, say, reckless driving, but you will still have a DUI on your driving record. And, if you don’t get your DUI expunged off your driving record, it will still show up on your criminal records. Even if you don’t work in a field where you will need to produce your driving record, most employers will run a criminal background check before they hire you.
The second step in getting your driving record back to normal if you have multiple DUI’s is to consult an attorney. They can help you with getting your driving record back to normal. A DUI attorney may be able to file motions to get your DUI convictions bumped down to reckless driving, if you complete certain classes or community service projects. Usually, getting a DUI expunged is complex. It is difficult to navigate on your own, especially if you have multiple DUI’s. An experienced attorney will know what to do to get your driving record back to normal.