Getting a DUI in Arizona (Driving Under the Influence) or OWI (Operating While Intoxicated) can have severe consequences for individuals who hold a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). CDL holders are subject to stricter regulations and penalties regarding DUI/OWI offenses than regular drivers.
Here are some general consequences you might face if you hold a CDL and are charged with a DUI/OWI in Arizona:
- Immediate Disqualification: If you are arrested for DUI/OWI while driving any vehicle, including your private vehicle, and you have a CDL, you will likely face an immediate disqualification of your CDL for a period of time. This disqualification can last for a minimum of one year for a first offense.
- Longer Disqualification for Certain Offenses: If you were transporting hazardous materials at the time of the offense, the disqualification period may be extended to a minimum of three years.
- Permanent Disqualification: If you are convicted of a second DUI/OWI offense in any vehicle, you may face a lifetime disqualification of your CDL.
- Restricted CDL: In some cases, you may obtain a “downgraded” or restricted CDL that allows you to operate non-commercial vehicles during the disqualification period. However, you will still be ineligible to operate a commercial vehicle until the disqualification period ends.
- Criminal Penalties: In addition to CDL-specific consequences, you will also face criminal penalties associated with a DUI/OWI conviction in Arizona. These penalties can include fines, probation, mandatory alcohol education programs, and even jail time, depending on the severity of the offense and whether it’s a repeat offense.
It’s important to note that these consequences can vary depending on the specific circumstances of your case, such as your blood alcohol concentration (BAC), prior DUI/OWI convictions, and the nature of the offense. Additionally, the legal landscape can change over time, so it’s crucial to consult with an attorney who specializes in DUI/OWI cases in Arizona to understand the current laws and how they apply to your situation.
Can You Get a CDL With a DUI in Arizona?
Yes, obtaining a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in Arizona is generally possible after a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) conviction. However, there are important considerations and potential restrictions to keep in mind:
- Waiting Period: After a DUI conviction, you will likely face a waiting period before you can apply for or reinstate your CDL. The length of this waiting period can vary depending on the circumstances of your DUI and whether it was a first-time offense. In many cases, you may need to wait at least one year before you can pursue a CDL.
- DUI Record: Having a DUI on your record can affect your eligibility for certain types of commercial driving jobs, as employers may have policies against hiring drivers with recent DUI convictions.
- Criminal Background Check: When you apply for a CDL, you will undergo a background check. A recent DUI conviction may be a red flag for potential employers or the agency responsible for issuing the CDL.
- Compliance with Requirements: To obtain or reinstate your CDL after a DUI, you must meet all the requirements set forth by the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). These requirements may include completing an alcohol or substance abuse program, paying fines and fees, and demonstrating a period of responsible driving behavior.
- Potential Restrictions: Depending on the severity of your DUI offense and whether it involved a commercial vehicle, you may face certain restrictions on your CDL. For example, you might have an ignition interlock device requirement or a restriction that prohibits you from operating a commercial vehicle with any measurable amount of alcohol in your system.
Contact The Law Office of Karl A. Mueller, PLC, today at 602-697-8761 to discuss your DUI case with our legal team. We can review your case and determine all available legal options to help you avoid serious penalties.