Anyone charged with a DUI who has a commercial driver’s license (CDL) faces stricter rules and sanctions that can have serious impacts on your livelihood and your career. CDL holders are held to higher standards than non-commercial drivers and therefore face much harsher consequences. CDL holders are scrutinized more strictly due to the heavy machinery they operate and the catastrophic consequences that could happen due to a crash involving a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). The consequences vary depending on if the violation happens while driving a CMV or a personal vehicle.
Commercial Motor Vehicle
The rules are different for those driving CMVs than those drivers in personal vehicles. As a CDL holder you can be charged with DUI if: You are under the influence of alcoholic beverages or a chemical substance to the extent that your normal faculties are impaired, or Your blood or breath alcohol content is .04 percent or higher.
While driving a CMV you need only be at half the legal limit of alcohol in your system than that of a driver in a personal vehicle to be charged with DUI. If you refuse to take a breath test after having been driving in a CMV, you will lose your license for 1 year. You may request an administrative hearing to challenge the suspension of your normal driver’s license. If you do not win at that hearing you can apply for a hardship license for your normal driver’s license, but you cannot obtain a hardship license for your CDL.
If you are convicted of a DUI while driving your CMV, you will be disqualified from driving a CMV for at least 1 year. If you were carrying hazardous materials, you will be disqualified for 3 years. You will have to complete the entire disqualification period before applying to have your CDL reinstated. If you are convicted of a second DUI or a similar alcohol or drug-related offense, then your CDL is permanently disqualified for life.
If you are a CDL holder and are convicted of certain moving violations in your personal vehicle you will lose your CDL driving privileges. If your privilege to operate your personal vehicle is revoked, cancelled, or suspended due to violations of traffic control laws (other than parking violations) you will also lose your CDL driving privileges. If your privilege to operate your personal vehicle is revoked, cancelled, or suspended due to alcohol, controlled substance or felony violations, you will lose your CDL for 1 year. If you are convicted of a second violation in your personal vehicle or CMV you will lose your CDL for life. If your license to operate your personal vehicle is revoked, cancelled, or suspended you may not obtain a “hardship” license to operate a CMV.
Given the detrimental impact that a DUI can have on your CDL, you need to hire an experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney immediately if you have been charged with a DUI. Call an attorney at KJ LAW today to discuss your case and legal remedies.
Categorised in: DUI Lawyer