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Getting a DUI can make joining the military much harder. Getting a DUI while you are already in the military can also mean dismissal from the military in some cases. If you get a DUI while on duty in the military, you could face a military DUI, which has different consequences than a civilian DUI. Learn more here.


Having a DUI on your record can making finding a new job difficult. But, if you have a DUI, it will not ruin your chances of joining the military. You can still be accepted into the military. But, your prior crimes must get presented when you apply. The military will decide if you are still fit to serve based on the circumstances surrounding your DUI.

Joining the Military

When deciding who is fit to join the military and who is not, the military heavily considers a person’s character and their way of thinking. While getting a DUI shows poor judgment, the military will take your personal situation into consideration before denying your application. If you can demonstrate to the military ways that you have reformed your ways since your DUI, you could make a strong case for your personal character. This means you could be accepted into the military.

The military doesn’t solely take into account a guilty conviction. They will also look at your character and other positive actions that you have taken in your life. The important thing is to be upfront about your DUI conviction when applying to be in the military. You are obligated by law to inform the military of any criminal charges or run-ins with the law. Hiding a DUI conviction will only hurt your chances of being accepted to the military. This is because the military will find out about it anyway.

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In order for you to have a chance at entering the military with a DUI charge, someone in the military must sign a waiver for you. This waiver means that the officer is aware of your past criminal troubles and is willing to look past them. Even if you were not convicted of a DUI, inform your recruitment officer of your run-in with the law. If you were accused of a DUI, you will still need to get a waiver signed before you will be considered for the military. Generally, someone with a higher rank than the recruiting officer will have to sign this waiver.

Applying While in Jail

If you are serving jail time for a DUI conviction, the military most likely won’t consider you as a candidate until you have finished your sentence. If you are on probation, you should wait until your probation is served before applying for the military. But, there have been cases where the military has accepted candidates currently on probation for a DUI related crime. You can still apply even if you are on probation. Just keep in mind that your chances of getting in will be slim.

Getting a DUI While in the Military

Getting a DUI doesn’t automatically mean that you will be unable to start a career in the military. The military will consider your personal case before accepting or denying you. If you can prove that you have changed since your DUI conviction, you might be accepted into the military. For more help, you can contact my office.

If you are a member of the military facing a DUI charge, your case will differ from a civilian’s. For this reason, you should educate yourself on your personal situation. Determine how you should approach the DUI charge, as well as the potential consequences that you face as a military official. Use this information about DUI and the military as a basis for your research into your case. This information can help you determine how you should approach it.

Civilian vs. Military DUI

While civilian DUI cases are tried at a regular court hearing, a military DUI case will be tried in a military court. Your DUI attorney should be reputable and well versed in regular DUI cases. They should also understand the unique process and consequences that you face as a member of the military. The first step in dealing with a DUI charge is finding a good DUI attorney. In civilian cases, the court hearing and overall process can take a long time. This means that civilians have time to consider multiple lawyers before deciding on the best one.

But, military DUI cases usually take much less time. So, it is important that you act quickly if you want to hire a good DUI lawyer. Most attorneys will offer you a free consultation. Use this opportunity to ask questions and determine the competency of the attorney. It is important that you feel comfortable with your attorney. This is because your representation in court could be the difference between a conviction of guilty versus not guilty.

Military Court

While military courts can use the state’s legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit, they are not confined to it. Even if you are caught driving with a blood alcohol level under the state limit, the military can determine for itself if it feels that your judgment was impaired. They can decide on their own if you should subsequently be punished. If this is the case, the military will charge you with a DUI. You might be able to make a stronger case for yourself if you were under the state’s legal BAC limit. But, you should be aware that you could still face the consequences of a DUI.

Military DUI Consequences

While there are clear consequences of driving under the influence in civilian cases, military cases are different. The military can determine how severe of a punishment you will receive. This is based on the circumstances of your situation and the facts that you present in court. There is no maximum punishment for military DUIs. This means that the military can decide your sentence entirely on its own.

This could range from a mere reprimand to more serious consequences. You could face dishonorable discharge, rank reduction, pay reduction, fines, or even imprisonment. The consequences of a DUI if you are in the military can be serious. Keep in mind that getting a DUI can end your career in the military. While this is certainly not the case for all members of the military, it is important to take this charge seriously. It has the potential to end your career.

Receiving a DUI if you are in the military can have serious consequences that a civilian with a DUI does not face. If you are charged with a DUI and you are in the military, it is important to build a strong case and find a good lawyer to represent you.

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