Will a DUI Stop Me From Getting a Passport?

By Jonathan Blecher on June 26, 2017

When people are arrested for DUI, they know that a conviction can easily mean upwards of $1,000 in fines, community service, imprisonment for up to 9 months, and up to a year license revocation – and that’s all just for a first offense.

With Florida’s harsh DUI penalties, it’s not surprising why someone who wishes to travel outside of the U.S. for work or pleasure might worry how a DUI might affect their ability to get a passport.

Can You Get a Passport if You Have a DUI?

A person’s passport privileges are not automatically revoked once someone is convicted of DUI, even if they were convicted of a felony DUI. While most people won’t be denied a passport because of a DUI conviction, it doesn’t mean that a DUI can’t technically block someone from getting a passport.

For instance, it is possible for someone to be forbidden from getting a passport in the following circumstances:

  • The defendant is considered to be a flight risk.
  • They defendant is facing a felony-related subpoena.
  • As a condition of probation or parole.

In the above scenarios, the court can revoke a defendant’s passport privileges, but this is more the exception than the rule.

You Could Face Restrictions When Travelling

The majority of DUI defendants don’t have any problems applying for a passport, however, they can face restrictions when traveling to certain countries. For example, Canada maintains the right to deny entry to noncitizens who have any criminal record, even for a simple DUI.

Even if you are able to obtain a U.S. passport, as long as you have a DUI conviction on your record, Canada may not let you in to the country; Mexico may not let you in either.

If you are convicted of a felony DUI, and you want to travel to Canada or Mexico via ship, you won’t be allowed to get off the boat. In effect, getting a U.S. passport may be easy, but you may not be let in to certain countries.

To speak to a Miami DUI attorney and fight your charges, contact my firm today.

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