Impact of a DUI on Commercial Driver’s License Holders

Impact of a DUI on Commercial Driver’s License Holders

A DUI conviction can be especially problematic for a commercial driver’s license holder.  A driver’s license suspension for a commercial driver can have a significant impact on the licensee’s ability to make a living if, as a result of a suspension, they lose the ability to engage in work-related driving.   The DMV will suspend your commercial driver’s license if you are arrested while driving a vehicle that requires a commercial driver’s license with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04% or more, or driving under the influence of drugs, or driving under the influence of any alcoholic beverage — meaning that your mental/physical abilities are impaired to an extent that you can no longer drive with the ordinary care and caution of a sober driver.

Your commercial license can be suspended even if you were not driving a commercial vehicle at the time of the DUI offense. For example, if you are a commercial license holder, and you get a DUI in your personal vehicle, your commercial license can be suspended!

Commercial license suspension periods:

  • First offense: 1 year suspension
  • Second and future offenses (in a 10-year period): Suspension for life

If I Get a DUI Under My Commercial License, Can I Get a Restricted License?

Some first-time DUI offenders who have non-commercial licenses can get a special restricted license during their license suspension period that allows them to drive to and from work and school.

But commercial license holders are not eligible for a restricted commercial license that allows them to drive to or while at work.  Commercial license holders with a first-time commercial DUI may apply for a regular non-commercial license, but the restriction does not permit any work-related driving, whether in a commercial vehicle or not.