If you’ve considered joining our nation’s armed forces, you’ve likely put much consideration into this. After all, this is not a decision that can be made lightly! However, something you may not have considered is how a DWI will impact your ability to enlist. If you want to join the military with a DWI, there are some things you must know. Keep reading to learn more and discover how a Bergen County DWI attorney can help you navigate this process.
Are You Able to Join the Military With a DWI?
It’s essential to understand that a crime or quasi-criminal offense, such as a Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) charge does not automatically prevent someone from joining the military. However, it will impact your acceptance. Generally, those with a DWI will not be selected to join the military, but there is nothing that explicitly prohibits allowing those with this charge to join. It is up to the discretion of the branch you apply for.
In New Jersey, a DWI is not technically a criminal charge but rather a traffic offense. This means it cannot be expunged from a criminal record. However, it is still treated as a crime.
Why Doesn’t the Military Accept Those With a DWI?
Generally, the different branches of the military have strict values and morals. As a result, they are selective about who is able to join. Contrary to popular belief, they do not simply accept everyone who applies. Instead, they consider a multitude of different factors. One of these is whether or not an applicant has a DWI on their record. In general, this can be associated with a substance abuse issue, which is something the armed forces take very seriously. While not everyone who makes the decision to drink and drive has an alcohol addiction, it can be indicative of more severe problems.
In most cases, some branches, like the Marines or Coast Guard, only accept a small number of applicants each year. This means the process is already competitive, and a DWI will only hold you back further.
Do I Have Any Alternate Options?
If you wish to apply to the military, your best bet is to avoid driving while intoxicated. However, if this has already happened, you may have other options.
One of the most beneficial options is to get a waiver approved. This is only applicable to those with one DWI on their record, and you will need the assistance of a recruiter to help. Similarly, you can only fill out a waiver if you’ve successfully completed your probation and sentence, the DUI was not a felony charge, and no one was injured.
If you’re currently facing a DWI charge, it is imperative that you contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible. At the Law Office of Attorney Conway, our legal team will do everything in our power to help you avoid these charges. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you through this time.