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How to Explain a DUI to a Potential Employer

If you have a misdemeanor or felony DUI conviction on your record, you may be concerned about it being brought up in the job application process. Here’s what you should know, and what you can do to prepare for this situation.

What Are Potential Employers Allowed to Ask About?

Each state has different rules regarding what information can be inquired about during a job interview. In Wisconsin, potential employers are not allowed to ask about an individual’s prior arrests or convictions. They can, however, ask about any pending charges.

Although they cannot ask you about your conviction record during the interview process, that doesn’t mean they will never find out. After they offer you a position, they may conduct a background check. Those results will show your past offenses, and the employer will decide whether or not to follow through with hiring you based on the new information.

Something important to note is that in Wisconsin, it is illegal for an employer to not offer someone a job due to their criminal record except in cases where the conviction is substantially related to the job (i.e., a DUI conviction on record for someone applying to be a school bus driver).

For more detailed information about what prospective employers can and cannot ask about your criminal record, click here.

When You Have To Tell Your Employer about a DUI Arrest

If you are arrested or convicted of DUI while employed, you may not have to tell your employer. Look at your company’s employee handbook to see if they have any requirements for disclosing information about DUI arrests. There are some fields of work where you will almost definitely need to report your DUI, including:

  • Commercial truck drivers
  • Uber/Lyft drivers
  • Airline pilots
  • Military personnel
  • If you work with children

When Discussing Your Arrest with a Potential or Current Employer

If your past DUI arrest and/or conviction comes up in conversation, you should be prepared to answer questions about it. How you discuss your past mistakes can influence how your employer moves forward.

Focus on how much you have grown since your arrest. Emphasize that your DUI was a mistake and one that you will never make again. If you were going through a difficult time when you were arrested for DUI, share that with your employer to give context.

Overall, make sure to emphasize you know driving under the influence was wrong, you’ve learned your lesson from the experience, and that you will never do it again.

Sheboygan OWI Defense Lawyers

At Melowski & Singh, LLC, we want to help keep your record clear by not allowing your arrest to turn into a conviction. Starting your defense as soon as possible is crucial to obtaining the best possible result; don’t delay and call our Wisconsin DUI defense team at (920) 294-1414.