College Students Beware: The Consequences of a DUI in Kansas

College students juggle a pretty hectic schedule. In between attending classes and hitting the books, most students find time to squeeze in extracurricular activities, whether it is participating in intramural sports, joining a student organization, or working a part-time job. Most college students would agree that they would love to have a few extra hours in the day to accomplish things. That, and of course some extra cash would not hurt either. If you are a busy college student who is strapped for cash, the last thing you want is a DUI. Before you consider drinking and driving home from your next party or social event, take a minute to review the enormous potential consequences of a DUI for a college student.

Regardless of whether you are a 21 year old college student, corporate CEO or a plumber, the law provides for certain punishments for all people convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol, or driving with a blood alcohol level at or above .08. The “basic” penalties are as follows:

  • Criminal Record: If you are found guilty of DUI, you will automatically have a criminal record. In Kansas a first time DUI is considered a Class B misdemeanor.
  • Fine:  For a first time offense the fine can be no more than $1,000.
  • Costs: In addition to fines, there are other costs of DUI including possible attorney’s fees and court costs.
  • Jail Time or Public Service: The court can sentence a first time DUI offender to a maximum of six months in jail or 100 hours of public service.
  • Education/Treatment Program: The court can also require an offender to enroll in and successfully complete an alcohol and drug education and/or treatment program.
  • Loss of Driving Privileges: The standard protocol for DUI is to have a suspended license for a period of 30 days and thereafter restricted for a period of approximately 330 days. However, to be eligible to drive after the suspension, a driver must apply for reinstatement of his or her driver’s license with the Division of Motor Vehicles. This includes completing an application, paying a fee and also possibly paying to have an ignition interlock device installed on the driver’s car.

These penalties can not only impact your wallet, but also your time. Time that could be best spending studying may be spent in court or attending treatment. Classes may be missed or you may have to quit your off-campus part-time job, since your driver’s license is suspended. However, unlike the CEO and the plumber, a college student can also face consequences from his or her college or university, which depending on the institution’s policies can include the following:

  • Loss of financial aid and/or scholarships;
  • Loss of student housing;
  • Notifying the student’s parents;
  • Requiring the student to attend alcohol/drug treatment; and
  • A warning, probation, suspension or even expulsion from the institution.

A DUI conviction can also follow you after you leave the institution whether you leave through choice or by expulsion. For example, other college and universities may require that you close your criminal status on applications for admission and/or for financial aid. Many employers also require employees to undergo a criminal background check.

If you are a college student who has been charged with a DUI or another alcohol-related offense you need an experienced DUI defense attorney. Do not trust your case and your future to just any attorney. With over 35 years of experience, attorney Charles E. Whitman will carefully review the facts of your case and research any and all defenses you may have. To schedule a free and confidential consultation call (785) 843-9460 or visit us online. The Whitman Law Offices is located in downtown Lawrence and is easily accessible to both the University of Kansas (KU) and Baker University.

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