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What are the DUI penalties for CDL drivers?

Those who have a DUI conviction can lose their license for a period of time ranging from one year to life. They may not be able to get a job driving a commercial truck. Their ability to work depends upon where they live. For more information about your DUI, contact an experienced Illinois CDL DUI defense attorney today!

DUI Penalties for CDL Drivers

CDL drivers will face:

  • A first-time DUI conviction comes with a CDL suspension of one year (three-year suspension if you were transporting hazardous material). This would be a first-degree misdemeanor. A first-degree misdemeanor has a penalty of 180 days in jail. In the case of a chemical test refusal, there are many other disqualifications. This is a testing violation. Other tests in violation are failing mandatory chemical testing.
  • A second or subsequent offense "past criminal history" comes with a lifetime suspension of your CDL. This is a severe penalty.
  • If you enter a deferred prosecution program and have a CDL, the state views this as a conviction, effectively suspending your CDL for at least one year
person driving a semi-truck, DUI penalties for CDL drivers

What Are The DUI Limits for CDL Drivers?

A CDL license holder who was driving a commercial motor vehicle when stopped by law enforcement had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04 percent or greater. A personal license holder who was driving an automobile when stopped by law enforcement has a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent or greater.

If you're driving under the influence of marijuana, you could face serious penalties. It’s legal in Washington State, but if you're caught with any detectable level of THC (the active ingredient in cannabis) in your blood, you could be banned from operating a commercial vehicle for up to a year. You could even lose your license permanently. Don't think because you are a "professional driver" doesn't mean you won't face severe penalties. It's best to contact an experienced Chicago DUI lawyer

CDL Driving Under the Influence (DUI)

A person who holds a commercial driver's license (CDL) may drive any type of motorized equipment including trucks, tractors, trailers, buses, and recreational vehicles. They must also meet certain requirements before they can obtain a CDL. For example, they must hold a valid Class B Commercial Drivers License (CDL), pass an eye exam, and complete a medical examination. Once these requirements are met, a CDL holder may apply for a CDL endorsement. An endorsement allows the holder to operate a specific class of truck or trailer. A non-commercial vehicle is a .04% blood alcohol content with any mandatory chemical testing, such as blood, urine, or breath.

FAQ: Can you get a CDL with a DUI on your record?

How Do I Requalify for a CDL After a DUI Suspension?

After a DUI, you may lose your driver’s license for some period of years, but you don't need to wait until then to get another one. You just need to meet certain conditions. These include settling any fines and fees associated with your case and meeting the requirements for obtaining a commercial driver's license (CDL).

1. Your Period of License Suspension Must Be Expired

A one-year CDL license revocation is imposed for first offense DUI conviction without any other criminal charges. If you're a repeat offender or if you've been convicted of additional crimes besides driving under the influence, you could face a three-year license revocation period.

2. You Must Pay All Fees

The reinstatement fee for a suspended license is $250 and for multiple offenses or a revoked license, the fee is $500.

semi-truck driving down the road, DUI penalties for CDL drivers

3. Complete Any Classes

You could be ordered by the court to attend an alcohol awareness course or a similar drug education course. If you want to avoid having another DUI conviction, you might consider taking some classes or attending an alcohol education program.

4. Complete Any Driver's Exams

If you've had your CDL suspended, you might need to retake your driving test. This may include an interview, a test, and an application fee. Taking a driver’s education course might be helpful for your insurance and show good behavior to the judge.

5. Attend Court Hearings

The severity of your violation will determine whether you request or be required to appear at a court date. An opportunity to show evidence in your defense helps demonstrate the respect you have for public safety.

FAQ: What can a DUI lawyer do for my case?

Though the loss of a CDL due to a DUI does not affect your ability to have one in the future, it may affect your ability to obtain a job. Meeting these requirements will help clear your driving record and improve your chances of getting back to work quickly and safely.

A Chicago DUI Defense Lawyer Can Help You Fight Charges

If you need a Chicago DUI Defense lawyer to help then contact us today at (312)800-1626 for a defense attorney for a free case review.

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