Can You Rent a Car with a DUI on Your Driving Record?

Categories: DUI Defense

Glenwood Springs DUI Lawyer - handcuffs car keys and a drink

*This article has been updated in August 2021.*

A car rental company has the right to refuse to rent a vehicle to anyone with a DUI, and most of them do. However, the time between your DUI conviction and when you request a rental also plays a factor in whether or not you will be denied.

You may need to rent a car during vacation or perhaps while on a business trip, and now you are wondering if that previous DUI on your driving records will prohibit you from getting around. If you have a DUI on your record, it is difficult to rent a car.

That is just one of the many long-term consequences drivers do not think about when it comes to a DUI conviction. If you have been arrested for a DUI, you must speak with an attorney about your possible conviction so that you can avoid some of the long-term consequences just like this one.

How a Car Rental Company Views Your Past DUI Conviction

A car rental company will check your driving record. After all, they are about to lend you a car and want to make sure you are not a risk for their investment. Most companies, even big-name rental services like Avis, will reject anyone who has a DUI on their record.

So, how long after a DUI can you rent a car? Avis provides an option for renting with a DUI on your record, given that you’ve had no DUIs in the past 48 months (4 years).

In contrast, numerous rental companies implement a stringent policy that extends beyond DUI convictions. Some companies adamantly refuse individuals with three or more violations within the past two years, irrespective of whether all three are DUIs or a combination of various infractions. This approach entails a comprehensive evaluation of a driver’s history, including speeding tickets, DUIs, or any other citations. The rejection criteria are not singularly tied to DUI incidents but encompass a holistic assessment of the individual’s driving record.

So, can you rent a car if you have a DUI? The answer depends on the specific policies of the rental company. While Avis considers convictions within the last four years, it’s crucial to recognize that others may have even stricter criteria.

Ethan WarrickEthan Warrick
20:50 02 Aug 23
Mark believed I was worth fighting for and turned an egregious case that would have ruined my life into a lesser sentencing. Well done.
Jason RodriguezJason Rodriguez
02:20 27 Jan 23
Cassandra NunezCassandra Nunez
15:16 19 Aug 22
I highly recommend Mark Rubinstein!He worked so hard for my daughter’s case and in short notice!We are very thankful for his help!
Jon NashJon Nash
05:31 06 Apr 22
O. To report it
Joel NixJoel Nix
18:18 30 Dec 21
Mr. Rubinstein was outstanding and went above and beyond for my case.. Grandpa Joel is taking a easy, thanks to you!!!
Mary HerreMary Herre
02:32 14 Mar 21
I got pulled over for speeding, which turned into a DUID. Mark was able to get me a plea agreement down to a deferred DWAI. So, if I behave, it will all go away! Even in the middle of COVID-19, he helped me through it all with good, helpful communications. I’m sure he would do an excellent job for anyone. Thanks again, Mark!
Morgan TuckerMorgan Tucker
19:50 12 Mar 21
I was arrested for a DUI and needed some help. After doing some research online, I came across Mr. Rubinstein's profile. I contacted him and after that the whole process for my case was simple and smooth and I really just followed his instruction. From the beginning to the resolution I was extremely satisfied with his help, expertise, and knowledge. I could not have picked a better attorney.
Cynamin ReedCynamin Reed
05:39 12 Jan 20
Mr. Mark Rubinstein is an OUTSTANDING attorney! I was facing 8 - 32 years for a crime. He always kept me informed of my case and never let me forget just how serious this crime was. The only jail time I did was the date that I was arrested. He was able to negotiate probation only. I consider Mark to be an exceptional Attorney! Thank you Mark
woodrow rockwellwoodrow rockwell
22:34 06 Jul 17
Recently a family member was in trouble and jailed in Colorado. I live many states away. I wasn't sure where to turn for legal help. Within minutes of calling his office Mark S Rubinstein returned my call. Mark expained what the options were, and put me at ease, considering the situation. We could not have had a better lawyer! He was honest, experienced, and professional. He did well by us. He got it done. He also wears cowboy boots.
Alea HendersonAlea Henderson
19:52 23 Jun 17
Mr. Rubinstein was hired to represent my son for a careless driving case in Mesa County. This is an offense that could have put 4 points against his license and potential jail time. We were elated with the services provided by Mr. Rubinstein which resulted in the case being dismissed. If your in need of representation - I highly recommend Mr. Rubinstein- worth every penny!

How Your IID Requirement Impacts Your Ability to Rent

Car rental companies do not have rental cars with ignition interlock devices installed. Therefore, if you are still required to have an IID installed in any vehicle you operate, you would not be able to rent a car, to begin with.

You May Be Stuck with Alternatives

If you have a DUI, it is best to contact a few rental car agencies where you are traveling and see their policy regarding DUIs. Some will allow you to rent a vehicle after a few years have passed, but the more recent your DUI conviction, the less likely it is that you can rent a car.

Rental companies do have the right to refuse service to individuals with a DUI – as they want to reduce any risk of loss.

That said, you still have alternatives even when you cannot rent a vehicle. Public transportation is always an option, but you also have ride-sharing services that might be in your area.

Do Not Drive a Vehicle If You Are Required to Use an IID

When a rental car company does a precursory check on your driving record, they may not realize that you need an IID. However, it is your responsibility to use an IID if the court has given you that as part of your probation. If you are pulled over in a rental vehicle, and the officer realizes that you are driving a vehicle not equipped with an IID, you could face serious punishments – including jail time.

DUIs Are Not the Only Traffic Violation That May Exclude You from Renting in the Future

While a DUI is a good reason for rejection,  you can be rejected to rent vehicles for other reasons. For example, you might be rejected for operating a vehicle without a license, unpaid parking tickets, or recent car accidents on your record.

What If the Company Does Not Do a Driving Record Check?

Not all rental car companies do precursory driving record checks. Therefore, they may not know about your past convictions. That said, if you are not allowed to operate a vehicle, or you have a suspended driver’s license, do not try to rent a vehicle out of state and hope that the rental car company won’t notice. Even if they allow you to rent the vehicle, you are breaking the law.

Being Rejected for Rental Vehicles Is Just One of Many Long-Term DUI Consequences

It can be devastating when you need to rent a vehicle and can’t because of a past DUI conviction. This is only one of the numerous long-term effects when convicted of a DUI.

If you have been arrested for a DUI, you must contact a defense attorney immediately. An attorney can hopefully negotiate a lesser plea or get the case dropped with the right amount of evidence. One thing you should never do is plead guilty or make a deal with the prosecution without consulting a criminal defense attorney first.

Just some of the long-term consequences outside of jail time and fines include:

  • Loss of Employment – If you have to serve time in jail, it is unlikely your employer will hold your place at work – especially if you are gone for several Also, if your job requires you to drive a company vehicle, you may no longer be eligible for employment. Some jobs, such as school teachers, do not allow individuals with a criminal record to be eligible. Therefore, you may have to change careers entirely.
  • Government Benefit Programs – Certain programs will prohibit benefits from going to those with criminal convictions.
  • Increased Insurance – Because you have been convicted of a DUI, you are now a liability to your insurance company. Therefore, you are more likely to have increased insurance rates – regardless of how safe you drove in the past.

Hire a Local Attorney to Avoid the Long-Term Harsh Consequences of a DUI

If you’ve been arrested for DUI, consult Mark S. Rubinstein at the Rubinstein Law Offices. Schedule a no-obligation case evaluation now. Mark has assisted numerous defendants in achieving favorable outcomes. Whether it’s your first DUI or subsequent, having an experienced attorney by your side is crucial.

Wondering how long after a DUI you can rent a car? Call us today for expert assistance in navigating your legal situation.

Mark Rubinstein

Attorney Mark S. Rubinstein has been practicing law for more than 30 years, including 25 years in Colorado. He founded Mark S. Rubinstein, P.C., in Carbondale after working for law firms in Denver and earlier in his career in San Diego. He focuses his practice in the areas of criminal defense and personal injury representation, and he is well known throughout western Colorado as an effective and unwavering advocate for his clients.