Virginia Criminal Defense Attorney
A Fairfax CDL DUI lawyer can provide you with legal representation if you get a DUI and have a commercial driver’s license. Commercial drivers can be cited for driving under the influence even if their blood alcohol concentration is below the .08 percent limit applied nationwide for most drivers. A commercial driver’s job and license can also be affected, even for a DUI conviction in a personal vehicle.
You need to understand your options for fighting to keep your license if you have been accused of DUI as a commercial license holder. A DUI attorney in Fairfax with experience in commercial DUI can help.
Defenses to a CDL DUI charge exist. You may be able to argue the evidence was improperly handled; that your BAC was higher at the time it was tested than when you were driving; or that there was another problem with your BAC test.
A Fairfax CDL DUI lawyer can help you try to avoid conviction by raising defenses or introducing reasonable doubt so a prosecutor cannot meet the burden of proving your guilt. Your attorney can also help you to negotiate a plea agreement, which may reduce penalties associated with a DUI conviction.
Your livelihood is at stake when charged with a CDL DUI. Contact an attorney in Fairfax for help responding to the life-changing criminal charges you face.
Virginia Code Section 46.2-341.24 prohibits operating a commercial motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. You may be charged with this offense if law enforcement believes you are impaired by any combination of drugs or alcohol. If your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08 percent or higher, this elevated BAC is sufficient proof of intoxication You can also be charged based on having certain amounts of drugs in your system.
Under Code Section 46.2-341.24(B), a special rule is established for those with commercial driver’s licenses. This provision of Virginia law prohibits a driver from operating a commercial motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of .04 or higher. This is just half the standard legal limit.
You are not permitted to decline a BAC test if police have probable cause. This means if police lawfully stop your vehicle and have reason to suspect impairment, you must submit to a test under Virginia’s implied consent laws. However, if police stopped you without justification or ask you to submit to testing with no probable cause to suspect impairment, a Fairfax CDL DUI lawyer may be able to help you keep any evidence collected against you from being used in court.
Commercial drivers face very serious consequences if they refuse a BAC test or if they are caught with a BAC above the .04 (or .08) limit.
For a first DUI conviction or first refusal to submit to a BAC test, your commercial driver’s license will be suspended for one year under the rule established by Virginia Code Section 46.2-341.18. If you are transporting hazardous materials at the time of the incident, you can be barred from driving a commercial vehicle for at least three years.
If you both refuse a BAC test and you are subsequently found guilty of DUI, you will be disqualified from having a CDL for one year for each offense. The suspension runs back-to-back, so you will lose your commercial license for two full years.
For a second CDL DUI offense, you will be permanently disqualified for life from holding a CDL. You face all of these consequences not just for a DUI conviction in Virginia, but for any DUI conviction that you receive anywhere in the country.
Other potential penalties for a CDL DUI can include fines, jail time, and required drug counseling, depending upon your blood alcohol concentration.
A CDL holder who receives a DUI or refuses to submit to a BAC test while in a personal vehicle will also face a one-year disqualification of his commercial license for a first offense.
Whether you own and operate your vehicle in the Commonwealth of Virginia or have received charges while passing through, a Fairfax CDL DUI lawyer can help you to get back on the road again as soon as possible. Please call our law firm to conduct your free consultation.