When you are convicted of a DUI, the consequences become even worse if you have a commercial driver’s license or CDL. The first and foremost consequence is the suspension of your license by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. This can happen by simply refusing the blood alcohol content test or driving in possession of a controlled substance. The worse the violation, the longer the suspension and the more severe the other consequences will be.
Increased Punishment for CDL Holders
If you have had two or three DUI incidents occur within the span of three years, then that can lead to the suspension of your CDL for up to one hundred and twenty days. One conviction alone can net you a year-long CDL suspension and the loss of any chance to apply for a hardship license. If you were driving hazardous waste, the minimum punishment may be a three-year-long suspension of your license. You may also be required to attend DUI school, pay fines and fees, or even need to spend time in jail. When you have a CDL, you are held to a higher standard by Florida law and face harsher consequences, both short and long-term.
Long Term Consequences
When facing a DUI conviction, you may also have to deal with the danger of losing your job due to an arrest. A CDL holder can lose their employment following a conviction or even an arrest. And a conviction comes with a stigma that will continue to follow you onwards as you seek new employment. You can lose out on job opportunities no matter how hard you work for them if a potential employer looks up your record. There are also reinstatement fees to consider, along with increased insurance rates. There is also an increased risk if another DUI incident occurs since CDL drivers can receive a lifetime suspension of their license.
When you suffer from a commercial DUI, the FLHSMV will impose reinstatement fees for a suspension. The worse the violation, the worse the fees, with the costs going up to $130.00. You may also need to take substance abuse treatment programs and continue to pay off additional fines and fees levied by the court.
In order to avoid being convicted and getting a criminal record, you’ll need legal protection. Self-representation is an option but it is very ill-advised considering the risks that come with a conviction. With legal help, you will be able to better protect your CDL with an appeal that could determine your license’s suspension. If the hearing with FLHSMV results in a suspension, then it can be further appealed in criminal court where the case can be reviewed and the punishments reanalyzed.
Hiring Legal Help
When you need legal representation defending yourself against a commercial DUI, it’s important to find a knowledgeable representative. They will not only be able to help you through each step but provide important information each step of the way to handle the many effects of going through the legal process. Don’t risk the suspension of your license, the threat to your livelihood, and carrying a criminal record by leaving things up to chance. Hire a legal representative you can trust to make sure you have DUI defense you need to protect your livelihood.