Will My Employer Be Notified of My DUI in Colorado?

will my employer be notified of my DUI

You don’t have to be a heavy drinker to wind up with a DUI. The margin for error when it comes to driving impaired is actually very slim. Currently, the limit sits at .08%. That could just mean a few beers at the bar over an hour and a half. That’s all it takes for your life to change.

If convicted, you face license suspension, jail time, and even getting fired from your job. But is your boss automatically notified of your DUI?

In Colorado, your boss is not automatically notified of your DUI. However, your employer may find out through various means, like if your job requires you to drive and your license is suspended, if you miss work due to jail time or court appearances, or if your arrest or conviction is covered in local media.

While there’s no automatic notification system in place, it’s crucial to be prepared for the possibility of your employer discovering your DUI through other channels.

Below, we explain the legal complexities of a DUI in Colorado and take a look at what it means for your job.

How Do Employers Get Notified of a DUI?

Unlike some other states, no law in Colorado explicitly requires informing an employer about a DUI arrest or conviction. Many companies won’t receive any automatic notification that an employee got charged with or convicted of drunk driving. However, DUI convictions are public records that the courts cannot seal under Colorado state law.

Employee Background Checks

Employers may access DUI records through standard background checks. Many companies routinely run criminal history and driving record screenings as part of hiring procedures or after a conditional job offer. Some also repeat checks periodically for existing employees per internal policies.

Public Database Searches

While no official channel shares DUI records directly with employers, a DUI conviction is a public record that anyone who performs an Internet database search can review.

Department of Transportation Reporting

DUI arrests for positions involving driving, such as truck drivers, delivery workers, or sales teams, also appear in national databases that log license suspensions and traffic violations. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations require sharing license suspension data after a first or subsequent DUI offense.

Word of Mouth

Beyond formal background checks and public database searches, details about a conviction can reach employers through informal channels like office gossip or local media reports. Word about high-profile drunk driving arrests can also travel fast in smaller communities.

Retaining legal counsel early is therefore necessary after a DUI arrest. Most defendants want to keep their names out of the media and national databases whenever possible.

How DUIs Affect Employment and Professional Licensing

Exactly how a drunk driving charge impacts work depends partially on the employee’s occupation and credentials.

  • Jobs Requiring DOT Certification or Security Clearances: A DUI arrest automatically disqualifies commercial driver’s license (CDL) certification for at least one year under DOT guidelines. Businesses must place any job requiring a CDL on hold until license reinstatement. Security clearances also usually get suspended temporarily after a first-time DUI.
  • Healthcare and Legal Fields: Doctors, nurses, attorneys, and other licensed professionals must notify their credentialing authority after a DUI conviction. This notification doesn’t automatically void licensure but does trigger an investigation.
  • Teaching Positions: Getting a DUI in Colorado requires informing the state education board. Teachers often face disciplinary action, such as administrative leave or reassignment from driving duties.
  • Financial Industries: Registered brokers, advisors, and other finance employees with DUI charges often must discuss circumstances with their licensing organization or employer compliance department.
  • Public Safety Jobs: For police, firefighters, security workers, and related occupations, one DUI conviction means getting reassigned to non-driving roles temporarily. Two DUIs usually prompt termination.

Beyond career-specific impacts, any employer can demote, suspend, or fire staff with a DUI, whether or not driving is part of their duties. However, companies make vastly different determinations based on internal policies, position importance, and employee tenure.

Protect Your Rights and Career Options After a DUI

Any drunk driving offense can threaten employment stability and future mobility.

However, working with an accomplished Colorado DUI defense attorney from the earliest stages minimizes risks by:

  • Providing strategic counsel on interacting with supervisors regarding pending charges or convictions.
  • Crafting personalized plans to maintain current roles or reputation during hiring processes.
  • Leveraging Colorado’s Chance to Compete Act protections against overly broad use of conviction records.
  • Securing testimony or references emphasizing positive changes in appeals of licensing decisions or unjust job termination.

If you got arrested for DUI in Colorado and worry about job security or licensing, schedule a consultation with a qualified criminal defense attorney at Right Law Group.

Employers often request updates on pending charges quicker than courts resolve cases. Getting in front of the situation by having us lay the groundwork for positive discussions with your company can prove critical for minimizing damage.

Don’t lose hope. With tailored guidance from our DUI defense advocates, many Colorado professionals can maintain their positions and livelihoods despite a regrettable drunk driving offense.

Author Bio

alexis austin

Alexis Austin is the CEO and Managing Partner of Right Law Group, a Colorado Springs criminal defense law firm she founded in 2018. With almost a decade of experience in criminal defense, she has zealously represented clients in a wide range of legal matters, including DUIs, misdemeanors, felonies, domestic violence, and other criminal charges.

Alexis received her Juris Doctor from the University of Denver — Sturm College of Law and is a member of the Colorado Bar Association. She has received numerous accolades for her work, including being named among the “Top 40 Under 40” in 2018 by The National Trial Lawyers and featured in Authority Magazine’s “Top Lawyers” series.

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