Will a DUI impact your right to financial aid?

On Behalf of | Sep 14, 2022 | Criminal defense

As a senior in college, you’re old enough to go out and drink with friends and colleagues. You’re celebrating being so close to the end of your schooling, and you’re getting ready to start your career.

What you may not have thought would ever happen was that you’d end up with a DUI. Right now, you may only be facing charges, though, so it’s important that you take the right steps to minimize the risk of a conviction.

A DUI conviction could potentially hinder your ability to get financial aid and scholarships, especially at the federal level, so it’s necessary to be cautious about how you handle your case.

Is your DUI for alcohol or drugs?

Drugs are usually a bigger issue for financial aid qualification than alcohol, so that’s the first thing to assess in this kind of situation. A drug-related charge is more likely to lead to disqualification for federal aid or certain kinds of scholarships than alcohol-related charges.

As of 2022, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) does not ask about DUI convictions. That means that you will likely not have to worry about your federal aid being impacted if you do end up getting convicted.

Your school’s policies may vary

Another thing you have to remember is that your school’s policies won’t necessarily be the same as federal policies. That means that you could end up facing trouble getting scholarships or entrance into certain programs due to a DUI on your record.

Your school may have its own handbook with information about criminal offenses and how the school handles them. If it mentions DUIs, then you need to review that information to determine if your scholarships will be impacted.

Every student is different, so a defense is essential

Whether you need federal or state aid, scholarships or other financial support, you need to know that those financial aids won’t be taken away when you’re in school. If you’re facing a DUI, it’s valuable to fight back and try to get the charges minimized or dropped. By doing this, you’ll give yourself a better chance of living a life that isn’t held back by a past criminal offense.