CDL Disqualification for DUI in St. Clairsville
Commercial drivers in the USA, particularly in Ohio, are held to a higher standard compared to other drivers. This is primarily due to two reasons. Firstly, commercial drivers have the responsibility to uphold the professionalism and reputation of their employers. Secondly, they operate large vehicles that require precise and professional maneuvering. In the event of an accident, the consequences can be catastrophic, resulting in heavy damage to the other vehicle involved and potentially causing the loss of one or more lives.
If you are a commercial driver operating a heavy-duty vehicle and have been charged with DUI, the potential consequences are significant. It is likely to lead to the loss of your driving privileges and even your job. Additionally, the possibility of causing fatal accidents will be taken into account, further amplifying the seriousness of the charges. If you or someone you know is in this situation, it is crucial to seek immediate assistance from a St. Clairsville OVI Lawyer. At St. Clairsville Criminal Law Group, our team of experienced St. Clairsville Criminal Lawyers is ready to provide the help and guidance you need to navigate your case.
Effects of DUI/OVI Arrest on CDL
The specific effects of a DUI on your Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) can vary depending on the circumstances. In cases where your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is at or slightly above the legal limit, the police will suspend both your CDL and your regular driver’s license. This is not a criminal penalty, but rather a civil administrative license suspension (ALS). You will receive a temporary permit that allows you to drive only your personal vehicle. The suspension period for a BAC at or above the legal limit is 90 days. If the offender refuses to submit to a chemical test, the suspension period increases to one year.
Retaining your CDL is possible if you are arrested for DUI charges related to impairment caused by substance use or prescribed medication. In such cases, your BAC may be zero, but there will be other grounds for probable cause. This circumstance may not result in license suspension for you.
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The Legal Limit for Commercial Drivers
For commercial drivers, it is crucial to understand and adhere to the legal limits for blood alcohol concentration (BAC). The legal limit for commercial vehicles is 0.4 or less. If your BAC exceeds this limit, it will result in a DUI arrest and Administrative License Suspension (ALS). It is equally important to note that the legal BAC limit for personal vehicles is 0.8. Blowing at or above this limit will result in the loss of driving privileges and Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).
Limited Driving Privilege Does Not Apply to CDL Holders
To challenge an ALS, you must file a request for a hearing within 30 days. The ALS will only be lifted if you can demonstrate compliance with the chemical test, prove that your BAC was not at or above the legal limit, or establish that the underlying traffic stop was unlawful. Although challenging ALS is no easy task, it is not impossible. Our experienced St. Clairsville Criminal Lawyer specializes in assisting clients with such cases and will provide the necessary guidance and support.
When faced with such an incident, your immediate priority should be to seek a limited driving privilege and consult with an experienced St. Clairsville OVI Lawyer.
Notifying Your Employer
It is imperative to promptly inform your employer about the charges. Without a valid CDL, you are prohibited from operating commercial vehicles for commuting to work, home, or any safe location. The vehicle will have to remain at the roadside until your employer makes alternative arrangements for its collection.
Engaging in employment-related activities without a CDL can lead to additional criminal offenses. Therefore, you will not be able to resume work until your CDL has been reinstated. In such cases, your employer may be compelled to terminate your employment based on their zero-tolerance policy.
Effects of DUI/OVI Conviction
Committing the offense of drunk or drugged driving, even if it involves your personal vehicle, leads to the suspension of your driver’s license. As per state and federal regulations, this can result in the loss of your CDL (Commercial Driver’s License). Upon DUI conviction, the CDL suspension for a first offense lasts for one year. However, if the vehicle was transporting hazardous material, the suspension period extends to three years. CDL suspension begins after the initial license suspension. After completing the license suspension and CDL disqualification process, you can reinstate your personal license and CDL by undertaking the CDL driving and knowledge tests, as well as paying the necessary fees. To avoid these consequences, it is crucial to seek the assistance of a St. Clairsville OVI Lawyer.
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