CDL Holders and DUI Charges in Virginia
If you are a CDL holder in Virginia who has been charged with a DUI, you have much more at stake than the average DUI defendant and should consult lawyer at your first opportunity. An experienced Virginia DUI lawyer can help you minimize the harm of your offense and advocate on your behalf while you fight this charge.
To learn more about DUI’s in Virginia or to discuss your case, call and schedule a consultation today.
What Should Commercial Driver’s Know About DUI Charges in Virginia?
In Virginia, commercial drivers should know that a DUI conviction will result in the administrative suspension of a CDL by the DMV. This is something that happens as a consequence of DUI, but the court does not actually impose this penalty and has no control over it. Rather, this penalty is imposed by DMV once it learns about the conviction, which happens almost immediately.
As is always the case with DUI there is an administrative suspension of your license when you are arrest which can last from seven days all the way up to the trial date depending on the severity of the DUI. However, if a person is merely charged but not convicted of DUI, they will still be able to drive using their CDL once the initial suspension before trial is over. It’s only a DUI conviction that will have impact on the CDL holder’s license.
Consequences For a CDL Holder Charged For A DUI
In Virginia, a DUI conviction will in most cases result in the administrative suspension of the CDL, this is something that happened as a consequence of the DUI, but the court does not impose the penalty and doesn’t have any control over it. This is something that’s done by DMV.
You should also be aware that there will be an administrative suspension at the time you are charged of at least seven days. In the case of more severe DUIs, such as a second or subsequent DUI, that suspension will last all the way until the trial date.
Is a CDL Holder Eligible For a Restricted License
Just as in all DUI cases, a restricted license is available under some circumstances after a conviction and suspension of driving privileges. However the CDL itself will be revoked by DMV and there is no such thing as a restricted CDL license.
That said, each court and judge handles restricted driver’s licenses somewhat differently. A lawyer’s experience in handling these matters is crucial to giving the client the best chance to get the restricted driver’s license a person needs to work in the wake of the DUI conviction.
Are CDL Holders Held To A Higher Standard in Court?
There’s no higher legal standard in a DUI case because the individual hold a CDL. They’re treated neither more lightly nor more harshly because of the CDL itself. However, if the person is found driving under the influence while driving a tractor trailer or some other large truck, in addition to the likelihood that they’ll lose their CDL on conviction, the court may treat the driver more harshly by virtue of the fact that more damage can be done in a larger vehicle than in a smaller one and the risk of injury or death is far greater.
What Are The Long Term Implications of A DUI Charge For a CDL Holder?
Long term of DUI conviction will make it more difficult to keep a CDL or to get one back if it’s been lost. A second or subsequent DUI will make it still more difficult to keep it or get it back since those charges result in a 3-year revocation of driving privileges.