It’s no secret that a driving under the influence (DUI) conviction can hurt. It can hurt your family, your friends, your free time and especially your wallet. Even successfully fighting back against a DUI charge can be costly. On the other hand, a conviction can lead to jail time, probation, community service and maybe even thousands of dollars in fees and fines.

A DUI can also seriously damage your career. Here are a few ways that your career can suffer if a Fort Bend County court convicts you of driving under the influence:

Suspended driver’s license

Typically, a DUI often results in a suspended license. This can seriously affect your job, especially if you cannot get an exemption to drive to and from work. You may have to take a taxi, the bus or hire a private driver in order to get to your job. Without consistent and reliable transportation, your job could be in jeopardy.

Violation of employment contract

Some employers require their employees to sign a contract promising to adhere to the rules laid out in the employee handbook. If these rules state that a criminal conviction is grounds for firing, then you could lose your job.

Your insurance could drop you

If driving is a major part of your job and the company provides insurance for you, a DUI could be enough to cause the insurer to deny you further coverage. This could also lead your employer to let you go in order to keep the policy active for other employees.

You could lose your professional license

Some professions require licensing. For example, if you are a doctor, nurse, lawyer or certified public accountant you probably have a professional license that you have to pay annual dues for and meet other requirements. If you receive a criminal conviction, you could be in violation of the requirements and the state could revoke your professional license.

You will miss work

Even if your employer does not have a policy that requires you to maintain a clean criminal record, the time you have to take off of work to attend court, meet with your probation officer, complete community service hours or go to alcohol treatment classes might cause your employer to fire you.

If you are facing a DUI charge in Texas, it is important to remember that you still have rights and options. With a strong defense, you might be able to beat the charges and avoid a DUI conviction.