Thousands of people in Fairfax County work for either the Federal government or contractors for the government. Many of these people hold security clearances that enable them to work in position that would otherwise be barred to them but for the clearance. Did you know that a DUI conviction can seriously impact your ability to obtain and/or maintain a security clearance?
DUI Convictions In Virginia
Succinctly put, your first DUI conviction in Virginia is usually considered a misdemeanor. Chances are your second DUI is also a misdemeanor. Any more than this, however, you become a convicted felon. Also, if your first or second DUI conviction was the result of an accident wherein someone was injured or killed, you can possibly be convicted of a felony well.
A Misdemeanor DUI Conviction and Your Security Clearance
A misdemeanor DUI conviction will not necessarily result in a revocation or denial of your security clearance. Depending on the type of clearance and the time that has elapsed since the DUI, it may have a minimal impact. However, if you have a top secret clearance or are applying for one, a pending DUI or recent conviction can result in the loss or denial of that clearance. Obviously, every situation is unique and every security clearance investigation is different.
A Felony DUI Conviction and Your Security Clearance
A felony DUI conviction could very easily mean the end of your security clearance. The government is very circumspect about allowing convicted felons to work with and have access to secret and top secret information and programs. If you hold a current clearance, you probably understand why. If you are convicted of a felony DUI and you have a security clearance, there are attorneys who can help you take steps to preserve your clearance in an adjudication proceeding. There is a better way, however.
The best practice, of course, is to not drink and drive. Failing that, the next best practice is to not receive a DUI conviction. DUI charges are just that: charges. You have the same presumption of innocence in a DUI case as you do in a murder case. Just because you are charged does not mean you are guilty. The Commonwealth has to prove that you are guilty of the crime they have charged you with. The best way to go about being found not guilty or guilty of a lesser charge is to go to court with an experienced DUI defense attorney.
Jad Sarsour is an experienced DUI defense attorney in Fairfax County, Virginia. He has defended hundreds of clients from DUI charges. He knows the law and has the skills and abilities necessary to apply the law to your case to your benefit. Just because you have been arrested and charged with DUI does not mean you will lose or fail to obtain your clearance. Please give Jad a call today at (571) 216-2639 to set up your initial consultation so that he can begin your defense immediately. The best way to deal with a DUI conviction and your security clearance is to not be convicted.