If you have a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and you are charged with a traffic offense or DUI, you could face serious consequences, such as a suspended or revoked license. This can significantly affect your life, especially if you use your CDL to earn a living and provide for your family.
While the best way to protect your license is to avoid a traffic offense or DUI altogether, this can prove difficult since you cannot control other motorists on the road. While you may face severe penalties, there are ways to protect your CDL license.
Types of Traffic Offenses
Many traffic offenses can result in a CDL suspension, and in serious cases, revocation. Some of the most common types of traffic offenses include:
– Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
– Going more than 15 miles per hour above the speed limit
– Reckless driving
– Violating out-of-service orders
The above examples are only a glimpse of the serious traffic violations that could put your CDL at risk. It is also imperative to know that if you are accused of a DUI or traffic violation, you must notify your employer immediately.
CDL Penalties After Being Charged With a DUI or Traffic Offense
If you are charged with a DUI or serious traffic offense, your CDL may be suspended. However, the period of time your license is suspended is dependent upon what the violation is for and your previous driving record. When the time comes to reinstate your license, you may also face expensive fees.
It is important to note that a truck driver’s BAC limit is 0.04, which is significantly lower than the regular 0.08 limit for other drivers. Moreover, once a CDL holder receives a consecutive DUI within a certain period of years, their license will be completely revoked.
While the consequences vary by states, other DUI and traffic penalties can include:
– Points incurred on your license
– Temporary time away from work or being let go
– Increased insurance rates
– Fines and jail time, which are dependent upon the accusation incurred
How to Protect Your CDL
If you are charged with a DUI, you should work with a lawyer to have your charge reduced to a non-drinking one, such as a wet reckless. Non-drinking charges often have less serious penalties, and you are more apt to keep your CDL. An experienced lawyer will understand how to negotiate to get your charges lessened or dismissed altogether.
The requirements to reinstate your CDL vary throughout the states. However, you will most likely have to do some or all of the following:
– Wait-out the suspension
– Complete court requirements
– Pay any reinstatement fees
– Retake the CDL tests
– Attend alcohol or drug rehabilitation treatment
It is important to note that if you are a CDL carrier and are charged with a traffic offense or DUI, you should seek legal representation right away. Fighting against accusations while having a CDL can be difficult. A skilled attorney can help you craft a strong defense and fight to keep your CDL, so you can continue making a living for yourself and your loved ones.
Mike Worgul is a DUI attorney with Worgul, Sarna & Ness, Criminal Defense Attorneys, LLC. Our attorneys seek to protect each of our client’s rights and fight to help them receive their optimal outcome.