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What to do if You Have a CDL and Get a Traffic Violation
October 7, 2022 at 9:00 PM

It happens to the best of us, you’re minding your business, driving down the highway, when, suddenly, you spot flashing blue and red lights. For the everyday driver, this is a hassle, but if you’ve got a commercial driving license (CDL) a traffic violation can be a major hindrance to your professional life. That’s where an experienced traffic violation attorney comes in handy.

At Monks Law Firm, we understand that traffic violations happen, and you’re often not to blame. We offer our clients comprehensive support through the legal process and will fight unjust violations to the bitter end. Part of our process is keeping our clients informed through every step of the legal procedure. Thus, for those who have a CDL and just received a traffic violation, we’ve outlined the first few steps you should take to fight your violation and keep your CDL.

Read up on special regulations for CDL drivers

Before we get into the minutiae of what to do once you receive a traffic violation, you should consider how you can best set yourself up for success as a CDL driver. CDL drivers have special regulations they must follow when on the road. For example, failing to stop at railroad crossings correctly may result in a 60-, 120-, or 365-day CDL suspension—the exact number depends on your driving record. Law enforcement officials can also issue an out-of-service order for certain safety violations, blocking you from legally operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV).

Understand the nature of your violation

The severity of your punishment will largely be determined by the nature of your traffic violation. There are some tickets that will automatically revoke your CDL, but frequently these are very intense violations—committing manslaughter with a motor vehicle, driving with a BAC above 0.08, fleeing the scene of an accident, etc.

Smaller tickets, such as going five MPH over the posted speed limit or parking incorrectly, are far less likely to affect your CDL in any way. This of course depends on your previous driving record, too. If you have a host of other violations and receive another, it could put your CDL in jeopardy. However, there are always steps you can take, regardless of the severity of your offense or previous driving record, to ensure the safety of your CDL.

Decide whether to fight your violation

Once you’ve determined the nature of your traffic violation, you should consider whether you’d like to fight it. You may consider your ticket or violation to be minor, after all, what’s $150 if it ends the process right then in there. However, having a speeding infraction or other violation on your driving record all but guarantees the next time you commit an offense you’ll be ticketed—and given a harsher punishment, which could result in the loss of your CDL.

In a perfect world, we’d receive one speeding ticket, learn our lesson, and never receive another violation—that’s just not reality. Mistakes happen and at Monks Law Firm, we believe everyone deserves a fair trial. Set your future self up for success and fight your violation now, preserving your driving record and ensuring the safety of your CDL.

Find a trusted traffic violation attorney

Once you’ve determined the nature of your infraction and decided to fight it, it’s time to find a reliable traffic violation attorney who can assist you through the legal process. Our team at Monks Law Firm has been serving the greater Houston area for 40 years. As a family-owned business, we know