Sooner or later, everyone makes driving mistakes. But when you earn a living through driving, the impact of your mistakes can be even greater than it is for others.
A clean driving record is worth fighting for – especially if you drive professionally.
By hiring a defense attorney who is experienced in fighting back on the side of those holding a CDL, it is possible to get your charges reduced or even dismissed. This makes retaining a defense attorney a good investment because you can save money on fines, insurance costs and the possible loss of your income.
Tougher Rules For Commercial Drivers
Traffic violations add points to your professional driving record, and these points lead to unwelcome costs. You may face fines and skyrocketing insurance premiums.
Even worse: when it comes to license suspension, in Pennsylvania the rules are tougher for those holding a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) than for others. It takes fewer points to have your license taken away. Obviously, this will have a negative effect on your ability to get and/or keep your job.
If you have a CDL, Pennsylvania law requires that you notify your employer within 30 days of receiving a traffic violation. You are also required to notify PennDOT within 30 days of receiving a violation while driving out of state.
If it’s your first offense, PennDOT will suspend or revoke your CDL for at least a year for:
- Driving a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) while your CDL is suspended, revoked, cancelled or recalled
- Committing a felony with a CMV
- Leaving the scene of an accident and failing to report it
- Having an accident that causes injury or death with a CMV
- Causing damage to an unoccupied vehicle or property with a CMV
- Driving a CMV with a blood alcohol level of .04 (half the legal limit in Pennsylvania) or higher
- Driving a CMV under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances
- Refusing a blood alcohol test
If it’s your second offense of any of the above, you can lose your CDL for life.
If you commit any of the above offenses while you are transporting hazardous materials, for your first offense you will lose your CDL for three years.
If you commit a felony that involves your CMV and controlled substances, you face losing your CDL for life.
You can lose your CDL for at least 60 days if you commit two serious traffic violations, such as speeding more than 15 miles over the speed limit or driving recklessly, with your CMV in a three year period. You can lose your CDL for 120 days if you commit three serious traffic violations in three years.
Out Of State
If you have a commercial driver’s license, you probably put in many miles driving outside of Pennsylvania. If your license is suspended in another state, the company you work for and others can access the information about your suspension using the National Driving Register database.
Additionally, most states share information about driving violations through the Driver License Compact. Pennsylvania is a part of this 46-state agreement. If one state has suspended your license, it is very likely that Pennsylvania will also do so.
Minor traffic offenses will be also reported to PennDOT under the Driver License Compact and they will be added to your driving record.
How A Lawyer Will Help
When you are up against a traffic violation, you need an attorney who will stand by you every step of the way, work hard to discredit any evidence – and work with you to determine your best course of action.
Pennsylvania Traffic Violation Law
Traffic violation is described and defined under The Pennsylvania Code under Title 75. Read the code here.
Questions? Contact us today.
Based on the evidence, Fienman Defense will try to get your traffic violation charges dismissed or lowered. Should the case go to a hearing or trial, we will fight to present the strongest defense possible for your situation.