Law School Discussion

Past DUI Issue?

Past DUI Issue?
« on: August 13, 2009, 10:37:27 AM »
When filling out my law school application, I acquired a list of all my driving and criminal offenses from various sources, the DMV, online background checks, etc. While I have no criminal offenses, I do have two minor speeding tickets that were immediately paid and I attended the driving class to remove them from my record. I admitted to these offenses on my law school app. However, when I was 16 I got a DUI/DWI, I can't remember which it was. I took all the necessary steps that were required of me to remove this blemish from my record, and now I can't seem to find any record of this incidence anywhere. For these reasons, I did not disclose this issue on my law school app to the school to which I have been admitted. My question is how can I fix this problem of nondisclosure if the DUI/DWI is actually still on my record? I definitely do not want to go through 3 years of law school only to find out that I have been denied by the Bar. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Re: Past DUI Issue?
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2009, 02:37:52 PM »
Look at your school handbook.  There should be a policy regarding this situation.  The policy is probably something like you need to write an addendum to your application and explain why you didn't disclose in the first place.  The addendum and reason for nondisclosure are probably read by someone like a Dean of Students who then decides whether your situation warrants disciplinary action.  Regardless, the fact that you did not disclose in the first place will likely be disclosed to the Bar when the Bar requests your law school records.  And then the Bar will decide what to do about it. 

In my opinion, your reason for nondisclosure is pretty stupid.  It indicates you'll likely lie if you think you can get away with it. 


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Re: Past DUI Issue?
« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2009, 08:29:36 AM »
Yea, you need to fix this. Disclose, its not a big deal. I had 2 DUI’s, but like you there is no record at all of my first one anywhere. So I wrote this on my bar app “I believe that in XXXX in the state of XX I got a DUI. I say I believe because there is no record of it anywhere that I could find. Likewise, my memory is a little fuzzy as I was, well, you know, drunk at the time it happened and it’s been 15 years ago but I’m pretty sure I got and plead guilty to a DUI…But my second DUI I remember that one well…..”

So far no issues with the bar, and there were no issues with my school either. BUT we had a guy come to our school and help us fill out the bar app and he said disclose EVERYTHING. He said they are not that concerned with what you did really, but they get very, very pissed off if you don’t disclose something, even trivial. Seems he was right because the bar has had my app since May 1st and not a word about it, but I know other classmates who got letters and had to explain stuff in a notarized letter, stupid stuff like why they never changed their DL to the state of the school.
I even disclosed a public intox and minor in passion that got DISMISSED just because I did not want them to find anything I did not already tell them about. Cover your ass now, so its not in the frying pan later.The bar has access to everytthing, expundged or not, and your finger prints which they run through a data base. They will find it. Disclosing is NOT as big a deal as you think it is, just do it.

Re: Past DUI Issue?
« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2009, 02:46:06 PM »
You absolutely need to do something about that. If you do something about it now, you'll probably be fine. If you wait until Bar application time you could be in trouble. I don't know about yours, but my school told us the first week that they have a policy that if you didn't disclose something you can disclose it later and for the most part you'll be ok (as long as you didn't murder someone I think or not disclose a felony).

Re: Past DUI Issue?
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2009, 09:13:28 PM »
Thanks everyone. At orientation last week I was told that I have a chance after labor day to write an addendum to the school, and as long as I do that, I will be fine. I appreciate the posts.