People convicted of drunk driving offenses often lose their driving privileges for a period of time. While a license suspension is inconvenient for many people, for some, it may cost them their livelihood. The Pennsylvania legislature is contemplating rectifying that harm by introducing a bill that would allow commercial drivers convicted of DUI offenses to have their CDL reinstated after ten years instead of imposing a lifetime ban. While no such legislation has been proposed in Illinois, the Pennsylvania bill could be a sign of changes to come. If you are accused of driving under the influence and are at risk of losing your CDL, it is smart to consult with an Illinois DUI defense attorney about your potential defenses.
The Proposed Pennsylvania Bill
Reportedly, the bill, known as HB1092, successfully cleared the House Transportation Committee and will now be presented to the full chamber for further consideration. If the bill becomes law, it would enable individuals who have faced lifetime suspensions of their commercial driver’s licenses due to offenses such as drunk driving convictions or other violations to apply for license reinstatement after a period of 10 years from the initiation of their lifetime ban. The application process would involve submitting a certified mail application form, subject to specific requirements.
Allegedly, Pennsylvania has stricter regulations compared to federal laws concerning disqualifications for CDL holders. While federal regulations impose suspension periods ranging from one to three years, Pennsylvania has the authority to impose a lifetime ban for certain offenses. The prime sponsor of the bill, State Representative Carol Hill-Evans, emphasized that while lifetime bans serve a purpose, the proposed bill includes numerous safeguards and necessitates that banned drivers complete reform programs. Certain convictions, such as using a commercial motor vehicle for felony drug-related activities or human trafficking, would render individuals ineligible for CDL restoration. Continue reading →