Driving is a privilege that is all too often taken for granted. For some, driving isn’t simply a means of getting from A to B. For truck drivers, their entire livelihood depends on their ability to drive. Having your CDL (commercial driving license) requires a certain amount of skill to navigate oversized vehicles, as well as the legal authorization to do so. A DUI can greatly impact the ability of a truck driver to work.
What are the Penalties to My CDL if I get Pulled over for a DUI
While it greatly depends on the state and the company you drive for, the first offense for a DUI often results in a 1-year minimum suspension. Subsequent offenses can result in a 10 minimum revoking of your CDL license. What’s the difference between having your license suspended and revoked? With a suspension, your license is returned at the end of the period and is considered active once again, meaning you’re able to return to work, even if that entails finding another company to drive for. W
Being without work for a year is bad enough, especially when coupled with the fines that come with being convicted of a DUI. Having your license revoked means you’re going to have to completely change your career, and even if you do get your CDL reinstated, you will most likely have a hard time finding a company that’s willing to hire you again.
What if I’m driving My Own Car?
The penalty to your CDL applies whether you’re driving a company vehicle or you’re driving your own personal car, which means that drivers with a CDL need to be extra cautious when they get behind the wheel. The penalty to your CDL also applies to DWI (driving while impaired) charges or refusing to take a breathalyzer test. Getting charged with a DUI can not only cost you a great deal financially but can also ruin your career.
What do I do if I’m charged with a DUI?
While a suspension isn’t the end of the world when it comes to your driving career, having your license revoked can be the final blow. If you’re pulled over and charged with a DUI, it’s important to get a DUI attorney. Even getting the charges lowered from a DUI to a reckless driving offense or something similar can make the difference between having your license suspended for a year or 90 days if you’re driving your own vehicle. If you’re driving a commercial vehicle then the 1-year suspension is mandatory.
However, by getting the charges reduced or dropped, you stand a better chance of being able to find work as a licensed commercial driver in the future.
Author Bio – Andrew is one of the leading DUI and criminal defense attorneys in both the state of Maryland and the District of Columbia. He blogs about Maryland DUI law has numerous videos on the subject and has been asked to appear on national television to offer his legal opinion on high-profile criminal cases