Commercial Drivers

The law regarding penalties for commercial driver's license (CDL) holders is harsh and difficult to understand. Although it is not practical to provide a lot of detail regarding the penalties applicable to commercial drivers in this space, a few points can be noted here: (1) commercial drivers who are convicted of DWI or various other offenses in a private vehicle will lose their commercial driving privilege for one year; (2) commercial drivers who are convicted of a second DWI or one of various other offenses in a private vehicle will be subject to a "permanent" (ten year) revocation of their commercial driving privilege; and (3) commercial drivers convicted of a third DWI or one of various other offenses is subject to a truly permanent (i.e. lifetime) revocation of their commercial drivers privilege. It is no longer the case that DWI convictions only create more serious consequences to the commercial driver when the incident occurs in a commercial vehicle. As noted above, commercial drivers can lose commercial driving privileges permanently for driving that occurred solely in a private car. Since various offenses, not just DWI, can trigger these enhanced penalties, it is imperative for CDL holders to consult with a knowledgeable lawyer before entering a plea to DWI or any major driving offense.

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