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While considering enlisting in the U.S. military in Virginia, you are likely aware that you will make many personal sacrifices and place yourself at risk on more than one occasion in your effort to uphold the Constitution and protect and defend the citizens of the United States. The profession is one to which most citizens give honor and gratitude for its members’ services. If DUI winds up on your criminal record, it may greatly impede your eligibility status to join the military.

You’d unlikely be the first person to try to join the military following legal trouble.  In some situations, such as a DUI arrest, both your civilian life and your potential military career may be negatively affected. Where DUI charges are concerned, it may matter whether charges were misdemeanors or felonies and whether you entered a guilty plea in court.

Reasons DUI may keep you out of the military

Whether the court hands down a conviction or you walk away from DUI charges without ever going to trial, the fact that there was an arrest and charges against you can impact your life in many ways. The following information may be helpful if you are currently facing problems related to DUI as a potential military service member:

  • The state may suspend or revoke your driver’s license if the court convicts you of DUI. Not being able to operate a motor vehicle would severely impede your eligibility to join the U.S. military.
  • Your individual recruiting officer could elect to try to help you overcome any obstacles you may be facing due to DUI in civilian life.
  • If you completed a substance abuse treatment program or fulfilled other penalties associated with DUI, the military may decide to allow your application for enlistment.
  • If your DUI occurs after your enlistment, your commanding officer may issue punishments on base, even if it was a civilian police officer at an off-base location who arrested you.

It is often possible to avoid conviction if you fight DUI charges in court. Facing such charges does not necessarily mean you will face a trial for the alleged crime. Much depends on the type of defense you present. You no doubt hope to preserve your freedom as well as your good standing in your community and potential military career; therefore, it may be best to reach out for support from someone well-versed in both types of law.

Many people in Virginia ask experienced defense attorneys to act on their behalves when attempting to overcome DUI charges and get their lives and careers back on track.