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How Will My Ohio DUI/OVI Affect My Professional Relationships?

Professional Relationships
When you cut to the very core of it, it becomes clear that professional organizations run on trust. The customer trusts you to meet their need, you trust the customer and your employer to pay you, the employers trust the employees to do their job well and we all trust each other not to cause us harm. Trust is perhaps the most fragile of things. To quote Warren Buffet “it takes a lifetime to build trust and a second to destroy it.”

Organizations are also always looking and investigating ways to reduce risk both outside and inside the organization. Even the most innovative companies look to cut down the obvious risks to its business. Whether that be eliminating employees that are known to be shady in certain practices, or simply instituting a highly complex screening process, a business is likely not willing to sacrifice its reputation or quality of a product in order to continue to employ an individual known to be a hazard.

The last thing is that people and co-workers will talk even when they’re not supposed to. We all know information about our co-worker that no one other than HR (or the police) should know. As hard as that may be to hear, office gossip is a staple in the business industry. There is an old saying you should never do anything you would not want your grandmother to hear. Your conduct, no matter where it occurs, will almost certainly make it back to your office, your colleagues, and your boss.

This is why being found guilty of a/an DUI/OVI is one of the most harmful entries on your criminal record. The very act of driving under the influence is completely in our control and a decision we make as individuals. We know making these decisions will negatively affect our lives. If we go out and expect to have cocktails, we choose to drive or take a taxi – we choose to drink or not to drink – We choose to drive after drinking.

So, think about an employer, a client or a co-worker convicted of a/an DUI/OVI, do you trust them to do what is best for the company? Do you trust them to be responsible when they knowingly made choices that endangered not only their own safety but the safety of everyone around them? Probably not. In a sense, it’s the same question we ask when we find out someone is addicted to a substance. It instantly engrains a negative image in our minds.

If you are found guilty of DUI/OVI, the impact on your professional relationships can often be worse than whatever penalty the courts will hand you. The few hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines you would pay will pale in comparison to the hundreds of thousands of dollars you lose if your clients and customers no longer want to work with you. Every time your manager has to consider you for a promotion, your performance has to overcome the handicap of your criminal record. You are essentially playing life on “hard mode”. You are consistently at a disadvantage. Given the gravity of a DUI/OVI, a charge was within your control, it is a matter of time before word spreads around your professional circle.

Thankfully, being charged is not the same as being found guilty of a DUI. It is possible to fight DUI/OVI allegations on many grounds. Faulty machines, improper procedure, and evidentiary gaps are just a few common defenses known to experienced attorneys. Should the defenses not be successful, it is always possible to negotiate plea deals which do not involve pleading guilty to the DUI/OVI and could reduce the impact on your professional relationships. Experienced lawyers know how to identify these and other defenses.

If you are charged with a DUI or OVI, please contact us today. The sooner we are able to begin the process, the easier it is for us to help you mend your professional relationships. We hope that you never need a DUI/OVI defense, but we are here if you ever do.