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DUIs with Commercial Driver Licenses

April 19, 2016

Getting a DUI can be a difficult challenge for anyone to face. It can cause serious financial problems, as well as problems in finding jobs in the future. A DUI can be especially problematic if you make a living by driving a vehicle. Commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) are required to drive vehicles like eighteen wheeler trucks, tow trucks, and busses. Many individuals across the country support themselves and their families by having a commercial driver’s license.

 

In South Carolina, in order to obtain a commercial driver’s license you must pass a medical examination, a knowledge test and a skills test, and be over the age of eighteen  In addition to these requirements, beginning in 2009, employers are required to tell the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles about any employee who tests positive for alcohol or drugs or who fails to provide a sample for a drug or alcohol test.

 

Consequences of a DUI on a Commercial Driver’s License

 

The consequences are severe if you drive under the influence or drive while intoxicated while operating a commercial vehicle.  A DUI in a regular vehicle can lead to the impounding of your vehicle, fines, jail time, or the installation of an ignition interlock device. In addition to the serious penalties for a DUI generally such as a potential fine or jail time, you may lose a commercial driver license for at least one year if you operate a commercial motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .04 percent. The traditional legal limit for drivers of non-commercial vehicles is .08 percent, so the restrictions on commercial drivers are even stricter. A commercial driver’s license may also be suspended for at least one year if you refuse to undergo blood testing, or if you leave the scene of an accident.

 

If you drive a commercial vehicle that is transporting hazardous materials, the penalty may be a suspension of your commercial driver’s license for up to three years.  If a commercial driver is caught a second time in an offense that involves alcohol or drugs, the commercial driver’s license may be suspended for the remainder of the driver’s life. If a commercial driver loses their license they will be unable to drive and make a living.

 

What should you do if your Commercial Driver’s License is suspended?

 

The first thing you should do is contact an experienced attorney who can help you navigate the difficulties associated with having a DUI. An attorney can help you request an administrative hearing in front of the South Carolina Administrative  Law Court. The Administrative Law Court is located in Columbia, SC.

 

Are you facing DUI charges as the operator of a commercial vehicle?

 

A DUI can significantly affect any driver, but when driving is not only a mode of transportation, but also your primary source of income, a DUI can be absolutely crippling.  At Surasky Law Firm, LLC we can help drivers, whether commercial or not, with the process following a DUI arrest. Contact us today and we can help.

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