CDL Disqualifications By Andrew Mishlove on January 21, 2021

Large commercial truck driving down a forest roadAttorneys Andrew Mishlove and Lauren Stuckert have helped many motorists throughout Wisconsin who face operating while intoxicated (OWI) charges. It’s crucial to have a skilled DUI/OWI defense lawyer on your side.

In addition to getting charges dropped or reduced, your OWI attorney can help reinstate driving privileges that have been revoked. This is particularly important if you face disqualification of your commercial driver license (CDL). Let’s discuss reasons for CDL disqualification, how long the disqualification lasts, and its impact on your livelihood.

What Are CDL Disqualifications?

A CDL disqualification means that a person is no longer legally able to operate a commercial vehicle. A CDL disqualification is issued following serious offenses.

Types of CDL Disqualifications

In the state of Wisconsin, there are three kinds of CDL disqualifications depending on the type of vehicle the driver operates.

  • General Disqualifications - These general disqualifications apply to everyone with a CDL.

  • Hazmat Disqualifications - These disqualifications apply to drivers who handle and transport hazardous materials.
  • School Bus Disqualifications - These disqualifications apply to drivers who operate school buses.

We will focus on general CDL disqualifications since they broadly apply to the different types of CDL disqualifications.

Offenses That Lead to CDL Disqualification

All types of offenses can result in a commercial driver’s license disqualification. This includes:

  • Operating a vehicle while intoxicated
  • Failure to stop and report an accident
  • Negligent operation of a commercial vehicle
  • Driving a commercial vehicle with a disqualified license
  • Refusal to take a sobriety test
  • Felony charges and offenses

These charges are applied to offenses on the job as well as in normal civilian life.

Different BAC Legal Limit for People with a CDL

If you have a commercial driver’s license, you must abide by a lower legal alcohol limit when operating a vehicle as a civilian. Instead of a .08 blood alcohol concentration (BAC), people with a CDL have a legal limit of just .04 when operating a passenger vehicle.

How Long Do CDL Disqualifications Last?

This varies based on the nature of the offense that leads to the CDL disqualification.

  • If a driver violates an out-of-service order (OSO), they face a CDL disqualification of 180 days for a first offense, and at least a two-year CDL disqualification for subsequent offenses.
  • If a driver operates a commercial vehicle while intoxicated, uses the vehicle to commit a felony, or causes a fatal collision with the commercial vehicle, the CDL disqualification will last at least one year.
  • If the commercial driver commits a second serious offense, they will face a lifetime CDL disqualification, with possible reinstatement in 10 years.
  • Using a commercial vehicle to transport or distribute controlled substances will result in a lifetime CDL disqualification without the possibility of reinstatement.

Why You Need an OWI Attorney

If you are a commercial vehicle driver who has been charged with an OWI, it’s crucial that you speak with our Wisconsin OWI lawyers. We will review your case and help preserve your ability to operate a commercial vehicle. The impact on your life and livelihood can be severe, which is why we will offer our legal guidance to assist with reducing charges and seeking CDL reinstatement.

Speak with Our Lawyers

If you have had your CDL disqualified and need legal counsel, it’s important that you speak with our team of lawyers. To schedule a free consultation, contact Mishlove & Stuckert, LLC Attorneys at Law online or call our legal offices at (414) 332-3499.

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"Mr. Mishlove was worth every penny and then some. I would consider him the Michelangelo of the DUI defense world. He is professional, dedicated, and pours his heart into his job. I would give him 10 stars if I could." Ronald S.

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