Can My Landlord Find Out About A DUI on a Background Check?

Housing is a necessity vital to our well-being and ability to function well within society. For families with children, it is even more important to keep a roof over their heads. While some people are lucky enough to be able to afford their own home, many people rely on their ability to rent in order to provide shelter for their family and make ends meet. While many people don’t worry about their ability to rent a property, after receiving a DUI they may become concerned about how this will impact future housing opportunities.

Generally speaking, those who have a prior history of criminal convictions may receive some unpleasant difficulties when conducting the business of life as a result.  A criminal record is known to negatively impact both employment and housing opportunities. The implications of a criminal record may deeply impact your ability to rent a place to live. Simply put, it is possible for a landlord to find out about your DUI via a background check.

Is It Legal for A Landlord to Avoid Renting to You Due to Background Check Info?

It is standard practice for landlords to require you to fill out an application prior to renting one of their properties. This application will require you to provide much of your personal information and allows the landlord to run your credit, as well as a background check on you. Background checks will be extremely telling, providing your landlord with a thorough picture of any prior criminal convictions. Yes, this even includes DUI convictions, which are also considered criminal convictions. At this point, a landlord may no longer be interested in renting one of their properties to you. They can simply deny you access to a rental property based upon your status as a “criminal”.

But, Isn’t That Discrimination?

If you are concerned that denying you access to a rental property solely because of your criminal record is discrimination, think again. It is actually perfectly legal. The moment you fill out an application to rent a property the landlord can legally run a criminal background check on you. They may then legally utilize information obtained from that background check to prevent you from renting from them.

There are some situations that are discriminatory. This can occur if a landlord were to find out about your record whether through hearsay, prior knowledge, or even your own admission and tell you upfront that they will not rent to you because you are a criminal. However, allowing you to apply and denying you after running a background check is not considered discriminatory.

Is It Even Legal to Run a Background Check on Me Without My Consent?

If you are concerned about the legality of a landlord running a background check on you without your prior consent don’t be. As it turns out, it is fully legal for a landlord to check up on you without your knowledge. However, most times, out of respect a landlord will ask prior to digging into your personal life.

With such serious consequences to your everyday life, if you have been charged with DUI don’t hesitate, seek the knowledge of a DUI attorney today!