Can You Get a CDL with a DUI in California?

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How Does a DUI Impact Your CDL Status?

Commercial vehicle drivers are required to have commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs). CDLs open the door to many career opportunities, but they also have more restrictions than normal driver’s licenses. In California, like many other states, getting a DUI while being a CDL holder or aspiring to be a CDL holder has severe consequences and can disrupt your job and your career prospects.

If you get a DUI in California, your regular driving privileges will be suspended for a specific period of time. This suspension can disrupt your CDL application process, making it more difficult to obtain a CDL in a timely manner. Similarly, having a DUI conviction on your record can make you ineligible for some jobs in the future, as employers are hesitant to hire a full-time driver with a drunk driving conviction.

For those who already have CDLs, a DUI conviction may result in the inability to operate commercial vehicles for an extended period of time. This disqualification is separate from your standard driver’s license suspension period.

If you are an aspiring CDL holder and are facing DUI charges, you deserve assistance from an experienced DUI legal team. For help with your DUI charges and to have all your questions answered, call our law office at 866-927-3295.

How Long Do You Have to Wait After a DUI to Get Your CDL?

A DUI conviction can eliminate you from applying for your CDL for a certain period of time. Generally, it depends on how many prior DUI convictions you have on record.

Below are the waiting periods for CDL applications:

First DUI Conviction

First-time offenders typically have to wait one year from the date of their conviction before they can apply for a CDL. All court-ordered requirements like DUI school, probation, and fines must be met before the application can be submitted.

Subsequent DUI Convictions

Multiple DUI convictions on your record can make the waiting period for a CDL application even longer. Having multiple prior DUIs typically leads to a waiting period of a year or more. Your specific waiting period will depend on your criminal history and the circumstances of your charges.

Federal regulations implemented in 2012 allow convicted offenders to be banned from applying for a CDL for life. The Commercial Driver’s License Act allows offenders to be disqualified even when driving a non-commercial vehicle. For more information about the CDL application waiting period, contact our law office today.

How Do You Get Your CDL After a DUI?

Getting your CDL after a DUI conviction is a lengthy process. However, with an experienced legal team on your side, you can go through the steps relatively quickly to obtain your CDL and begin working.

To start the waiting period before you can get your CDL, you must complete all of your court-ordered requirements after your conviction. This could involve attending DUI school, paying fines, and serving all the terms of your probation. You must complete all of these requirements to show that you are committed to rectifying your mistake after your conviction.

Engaging in a substance abuse treatment plan is optional, but it can help you apply for your CDL later on. Entering a voluntary substance abuse program shows that you are committed to making a change for the better, which can influence your future potential employers.

As you wait for the disqualification period to expire, focus on building a good personal driving record. To maintain a clean driving history, adhere to all traffic laws, and avoid any traffic infractions.

Once the waiting period is over, you can apply for a CDL. Keep in mind that the DUI conviction will remain on your record and may disqualify you from certain jobs or career opportunities.

Will My CDL be Automatically Suspended After a DUI?

If you are a CDL holder and are convicted of a DUI, it is very likely that your CDL will be suspended automatically. Your CDL can be suspended even if you are convicted of a DUI while driving a personal vehicle. The suspension period varies but is typically around one year.

During your CDL suspension, you will be unable to drive any commercial vehicles. It is likely that you will lose your job and be unable to work while your license is suspended. To avoid a DUI conviction and keep your CDL, reach out to our legal team today.

Can a DUI Defense Attorney Help Me?

A DUI conviction carries severe criminal penalties. Jail time, probation, fines, mandatory DUI school, and a driver’s license suspension are all possibilities, even for first-time offenders. For CDL holders or aspiring CDL drivers, a DUI conviction can mean a license suspension and a waiting period before you can apply for a CDL. These consequences can make it impossible to work, leaving you unable to support yourself or your family.

If you are facing DUI charges, contacting our team of experienced DUI attorneys is essential. At the DUI Defense Group, we can help defend you from DUI charges to reduce or even remove the penalties you are facing. By examining the facts of your case, our attorneys can determine what the best defense strategy for you is. We can negotiate with prosecutors on your behalf, help you answer questions from the police, and represent you in court before a judge.

Our qualified lawyers have years of experience protecting clients from DUI penalties. We are confident that with our background and legal knowledge, we can assist you with your DUI case. For more information and to receive a free consultation, contact our office today by calling 866-927-3295.

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