Long Term Consequences of Impaired Driving

There have been significant improvements over the past decade or so in Canadian law. Drinking and driving, however, remains a serious social problem in Canada and globally. It is the most common criminal offense, and many drivers with otherwise clean records have suddenly found their lives in a tailspin after being charged with a DUI. According to driving lawyers in Winnipeg, impaired driving can have major ramifications that can hover for years. The short term consequences are common knowledge, which includes temporary license suspension, fines, and fees, court-mandated community service, enrolling in drunk driving education programs, and even jail time.

Unfortunately, the aftershocks from a DUI can cause long term effects with the most considerable inconvenience to the overall quality of life. Even if you fulfill your legal obligations and pay your fines, a DUI conviction could undermine your future opportunities and raise the stakes of life in general.

Being aware of the long term effects of impaired driving conviction is the first step towards protecting yourself, your family, and, ultimately, your future.

Suspension of driver’s license:

A DUI could get your license revoked for up to two years for your first conviction. With a conviction on your record, it would be difficult to get to work, or loss of employment is driving is a requisite. Losing the right to drive is akin to the loss of freedom, which is stressful. It would become annoying if you are not able to do simple things like running errands, being unable to take family trips, or other social activities.

Employment:

The job you presently hold may be jeopardized by a DUI conviction. The time consumed by court dates, jail time, and community service would put your job at risk. Plus, you may set your job application at a disadvantage if you have a DUI conviction on your record.

Background checks:

Running a background check is a common practice for employers before hiring anyone. An impaired driving charge would appear on your record and become an obstacle in getting hired. Background checks are also done by financial aid programs and housing aids, which would lessen your chances of getting approved. It could also hinder your opportunity of getting a place of residence in case landlords run background checks.

Auto-insurance rates:

Your auto insurance rates will increase following a DUI because such drivers are considered ‘high-risk’ drivers by insurance companies. The prices may double or triple for several years, or your coverage may altogether be terminated.

Professional and personal relationships:

Let’s put aside a conviction hoping you hired the best impaired driving lawyers in Winnipeg, even a DUI arrest can adversely affect your relationships at work and home. Your employers and co-workers will see you in a new perspective, shadowed by your DUI. Such things are difficult to keep under wraps and are bound to become public knowledge sooner or later.

Your family and friends will become concerned about you and be overly attentive to your behavior, which will make you resent them. You may think that they have lost their faith in you, and you may experience feelings of embarrassment and shame. Even if you feel that everything is under control, it will be hard to renew that trust in the people around you. It will become frustrating when they talk to you about your drinking or advice you about it.

Scholarship programs:

Your college application may be affected since many schools do not accept students who have a DUI conviction on their records. Your application may be denied or revoked. Some schools also run background checks and demand that applicants disclose criminal history, if any, on their applications.

 A DUI conviction could have repercussions that would last for years, and maybe you could get off easy with an expert driving offense lawyer. But why take such a chance at all when there are several lives at stake. Impaired driving does not affect only you, but it could lead to a wave of disaster for yourself and any other person involved. Life is unpredictable as it is, so don’t take anything for granted and be responsible for the sake of your future and lives of those around you.   

Gerri Wiebe