A DUI conviction has strong consequences, but the severe legal punishment for someone with a commercial driver’s license (CDL) can be life-altering. Fines, possible jail time and the inability to obtain another commercial driving job are all possible outcomes should you be convicted. If you were arrested for DUI, don’t risk losing your livelihood. Call the skilled CDL DUI lawyers at Bates and McMillin to save your CDL and your career.
CDL Suspension Following a DUI
Louisiana’s CDL DWI laws adhere to the federal guidelines for commercial driver’s licenses. The guidelines are strict and impose a minimum of a one-year license suspension for a variety of offenses, particularly those connected to drinking and driving.
The federal CDL guidelines examine “major” and “minor” violations. Major violations result in a one-year license suspension or “disqualification.” The suspension could also last 3 years if you were transporting hazardous materials at the time of your arrest.
DUI convictions and refusals to take the blood alcohol test required as part of Louisiana’s Informed Consent Law are both major violations and will result in a CDL suspension.
If you get a second DUI or commit any other major violation, such as driving under the influence of drugs or leaving the scene of an accident, you could receive a lifetime disqualification for your CDL. This suspension can go as long as ten years before reinstatement would be considered.
The punishment for a DUI with a CDL is too severe to plead guilty. Call our office now for a free review of your case and learn how you can win against the State of Louisiana.
What happens if a commercial driver gets a DUI in a personal vehicle?
It does not matter if you were driving a commercial vehicle or a personal vehicle. Any DUI conviction will get your CDL disqualified.
Legal Alcohol Limit for CDL Drivers
When a commercial driver’s license is involved, different rules apply to an arrest for DUI. A key difference is that the blood alcohol limit is significantly lower if you are pulled over when operating a commercial vehicle. While Louisiana’s limit is .08 for the BAC when driving a non-commercial vehicle, the blood alcohol level at which a CDL driver in a commercial vehicle can be arrested is .04.
Louisiana is also less forgiving of traffic offenses than many other states. Louisiana does not allow commercial drivers to remove moving violations from their record by participating in Defensive Driving or Deferred Adjudication. Thus, pairing previous traffic offenses with a DUI conviction will harm your driving record and substantially increase the cost of your insurance.
You Need to Act Now if You Have a CDL and Were Charged with a DUI
A DUI in Louisiana is time sensitive and the suspension of your driver’s license is automatic. Unless action is taken quickly, a DWI arrest results in your license being suspended in addition to other penalties for DUI.
There’s no time to waste if you face a possible DUI conviction. Call the criminal defense attorneys of James Bates and Robert McMillin today to beat your DUI charges and save your job!