south carolina dui record expungement

Getting arrested for a DUI is stressful, but when you’re successfully charged with a DUI, it’s normal to wonder how that charge could impact your life. With some criminal convictions, it’s possible to have the charge expunged from your record. When you do this, it looks like the charge never happened and gives you a clean slate. Unfortunately, there are limits to what the state allows to be expunged and your South Carolina DUI defense attorney is here to help. This is what you need to know about DUIs and your permanent record.

DUI Charges Cannot Be Expunged From Your Record

Some states allow DUI convictions to be expunged from a person’s record if they meet certain requirements. But South Carolina isn’t so forgiving. The state requires that DUI convictions stay on your record permanently.

This is likely due to the fact that South Carolina treats DUI convictions very seriously. The state has even gone so far as to increase the severity of the punishments they dole out, like requiring ignition interlock devices even for first-time offenders. 

But it’s not just DUI that stays on your record permanently. The state takes all traffic offenses seriously. If you’re convicted with a felony for reckless driving, reckless driving leading to a death, or a hit and run, those convictions will also stay on your record.

What This Means for Your Future

Having any convictions on your record can impact your future in ways that you may not realize. That DUI conviction could keep you from getting certain jobs, especially if they require you to operate heavy machinery, drive a forklift, or drive a company vehicle in the course of your work. 

It also means prospective employers, landlords, and other individuals performing a background check will be able to see that you were convicted of a DUI. This could lead to unconscious bias in hiring decisions and you could end up getting passed over for opportunities that you’re otherwise qualified for. Your DUI conviction could also cause a landlord to choose a different tenant for a property that you’re otherwise the perfect fit for, regardless of your rental history. And proving discrimination based on your conviction can be incredibly difficult. 

DUI Arrests May Be Cleared From Your Record 

Though convictions will stay on your record, being arrested for DUI could disappear from your record if the case (and the charges against you) are dismissed. Keep in mind that you’ll need to prove that you were innocent of the charges against you. And proving that the charges against you shouldn’t stick is possible, even if it might not seem that way when you’re waiting for your court date.

Some common reasons that DUI charges get dismissed include the following:

  • Failure of the police to administer proper blood alcohol content (BAC) screenings
  • Failure of the police to establish probable cause for the stop
  • Failure to properly maintain and calibrate breath testing tools resulting in inaccurate readings
  • Not receiving a reading of your Miranda rights during the arrest
  • Denying you the right to an attorney

Your South Carolina DUI defense attorney will examine your case and research the circumstances surrounding your arrest. If they find any signs that the arrest was made without cause or discover that the police did not act in accordance with the law, they may be able to get your charges dropped. Once this happens, your arrest will not appear on your record. 

Let Truslow & Truslow Help

If you’ve been arrested and charged with a DUI, working with a South Carolina DUI defense attorney is always a good idea. At Truslow & Truslow, our team understands that mistakes happen. We’ll represent your case to the best of our ability so you can be sure to receive fair treatment in court. Contact us to schedule a free consultation