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Is your job in jeopardy because of a DUI conviction?

Let us say that you drive a truck for a nationally known potato chip supplier, and you are a valued company employee of some 12 years’ standing. You are expecting a promotion later this year. A co-worker just received a similar promotion, and you are invited to his celebration party.

You are just getting off work when the fun begins, so you drive your truck to the party site, a local restaurant. You leave the celebration an hour later, having enjoyed a few beers, and are on your way back to the warehouse to drop off the truck when a law enforcement officer pulls you over on suspicion of drunk driving. The first thought you have is for your job. Will you lose it as a result of this run-in with the police?

Penalties and next steps

You are fortunate in one regard: This is your first offense. Also, you are wise enough to submit to the testing that will determine your blood alcohol level, otherwise the court could disqualify you from operating a commercial motor vehicle for 12 months. You will also face significant fines. You should waste no time in seeking legal representation by an advocate who will protect your rights and guide you through the DUI administrative hearing that will determine the fate of your commercial driver’s license.

Your BAC plays a big role

In addition to any other penalties, if you were driving your truck with a blood alcohol level of 0.04 percent or higher, the court can disqualify you from driving a CMV for one year and you must complete DUI school. Because this is your first conviction, however, you may be able to obtain hardship reinstatement so that you can still drive for the potato chip company.

Avoiding further trouble

Your attorney can help you apply for the hearing that determines hardship license reinstatement. If you have a clean driving record, and your DUI is a first offense, you may be able to keep your CMV license—and your job.

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