As a professional truck driver, your commercial driver’s license (CDL) represents your livelihood. Without it, you could lose your job and be unable to find subsequent employment. Therefore, you need to protect it at all costs.
What you may not realize, however, is that even a relatively minor traffic offense conviction can result in the suspension or revocation of your CDL. If you accumulate too many traffic convictions, your current employer may well fire you, and prospective employers and their insurance companies likely will deem you a reckless driver and an insurance risk – and refuse to hire you.
The laws applicable to CDLs hold you to a higher standard of operational care than those applied to regular drivers. For instance, you cannot take a driver’s education course in order to get your ticket dismissed. In addition, you could lose your CDL even if your traffic conviction resulted from an infraction you committed while driving your personal vehicle.
Another thing you need to remember is that traffic convictions follow you from state to state. For instance, if you are a Florida-based driver who receives a conviction in New York, that conviction does not just go on your New York driving record. The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in New York forwards the information to the Florida DMV. Your state, in turn, holds this conviction against you just as though you had received the conviction there. The same applies if you have a Florida driver’s license and get a traffic conviction in Ontario or Quebec.
Even a first-time traffic conviction can significantly raise your insurance premiums. Get more than one, and your insurance company will likely drop you – and you will find it difficult to obtain insurance from another company.
Responsible driving is an obligation of everyone on the road – and there are consequences of breaking the rules. However, for truck drivers, one honest mistake behind the wheel could put your entire career in jeopardy. This is why it’s so important to work with an experienced criminal defense attorney who can fight to get your charges dropped.