Minnesota has some of the harshest DWI laws, especially for commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders. The state criminalizes operating or driving a commercial vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.04 and above. This differs from most other states with a threshold BAC of 0.08.
But what happens after a DWI conviction? Under Minnesota law, a CDL holder may lose their driving privileges if convicted of DWI. Below are some of the consequences of a DWI conviction.
You can lose your license for one year
If you’re arrested and convicted of DWI, you risk having your license suspended for one year, even for a first violation. However, you could lose your license for even longer if you haul hazardous material.
You can lose your CDL for life
If you’re convicted of a second DWI, whether you were operating a commercial or personal vehicle, you’ll permanently lose your commercial driver’s license. This means that your career may end due to an honest mistake. After all, a single glass of wine at dinner with your family may result in a BAC of 0.04. Unfortunately, a DWI case with adequate evidence may not be easily dismissed.
You can be jailed after a DWI with a CDL
Besides losing your CDL after a DWI conviction, you may also face additional criminal consequences, including jail time and fines. At the same time, you may face civil lawsuits for damages if the DWI resulted in injuries and/or property damage.
Keep in mind that both criminal and civil penalties resulting from a DWI conviction may affect your ability to obtain federal student financial aid or find a new job.
Given the negative and life-changing consequences of a DWI conviction, you should consider seeking legal assistance immediately after you’re arrested. This will help you protect your rights and develop a defense that may help protect your livelihood.