If you hold a commercial drivers license you are subject to additional requirements and more intense scrutiny. Under Florida law, you may not operate a commercial vehicle if you have any alcohol in your body.
Persons convicted of driving a commercial motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol level of .04 or above or refusing to submit to a test to determine the alcohol concentration while driving a commercial motor vehicle, driving a commercial motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance, or driving a commercial motor vehicle while in possession of a controlled substance shall be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 1 year. This is in addition to any provisions of s. 316.193 for DUI convictions.
Second or subsequent conviction of any of the above offenses arising out of separate incidents will result in a permanent disqualification from operating a commercial motor vehicle.
There are no provisions for persons disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle to obtain a hardship (business or employment) license to operate a commercial motor vehicle.
Because of these enhanced penalties, there are additional warnings the police must give you as a holder a Commercial Driver License (CDL).
The police officer must warn you:
“Failure to submit to such a breath or urine test or both, will result in the suspension of your privileges to operate a commercial motor vehicle for a period of one year for a first refusal, or in the case of a second refusal, your privileges to operate a commercial motor vehicle will be disqualified permanently.
A refusal to submit to a chemical breath or urine test upon the request of a law enforcement officers as provided in this section shall be admissible into evidence in any criminal proceeding.”
Often police officers fail to give CDL holders proper warning during a DUI investigation. This could result in having the suspension against you thrown out. You have the right to an administrative hearing, but you must act within 10 days of the ticket.
Given the harshness of the administrative suspension, you are advised to seek the help of a lawyer to see if we can help you save your license. If your license is your livelihood, contact us online or give us a call at 727-896-7000.