Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDL) & DUI

How Can A DUI Impact My CDL?

A DUI for a CDL holder is absolutely devastating in that it can result in a CDL disqualification for anywhere from one year to life. This is true even if the CDL holder was driving their personal vehicle. A first-time DUI conviction will disqualify the driver for one year. If the CDL holder is charged with DUI and was transporting hazardous materials, then they could be disqualified from holding a CDL for up to three years. A second conviction will result in a lifetime ban of the CDL. It’s important to note that a deferred prosecution for a CDL holder is considered a DUI conviction. Additionally, the legal limit of a BAC reading is 0.04 for drivers of commercial vehicles.

Despite marijuana being legal in Washington State, having any detectable level of marijuana in one’s system while operating a vehicle can potentially disqualify a CDL holder for anywhere from one year to life, depending on their history. To requalify after a CDL suspension on a first-time DUI, the CDL holder must pass the CDL knowledge and skills test and pay a $35 requalification fee. If a CDL holder receives a second-time DUI, then they will be forever barred from obtaining their CDL.

If I Miss the Filing Date of My Administrative Hearing for My License, Is There Anything I Can Do?

After an arrest, an individual has seven days to request an administrative DUI hearing. If they miss this window of opportunity, then the individual’s license will be suspended for anywhere from 90 days to several years.

After My License Suspension, Will My Driver’s License Be Automatically Reinstated?

After a license suspension, a person’s driver’s license will not be automatically reinstated. For a license to be reinstated, a person must obtain SR-22 insurance and carry it for at least three years. Depending on the length of the suspension or revocation, the individual may have to retake the knowledge or driving portion of the test and pay a fee. The fee varies depending on the cause of the license suspension. If the suspension was alcohol-related, then the individual must take the affirmative steps to get their license back; if they fail to take these steps and get caught driving, then they will be charged with a criminal offense.