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Can You Get a CDL With a DWI on Your Record?

can you get a cdl with a dwi on your record

If you’re thinking about a career driving commercial vehicles, you’ll first need a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). As you prepare to test for this license, you’ll find you need a good driving record, and a conviction for driving while intoxicated (DWI) can certainly leave a mark on that record. So, does that mean you can’t get a CDL after a DWI? While it can make it much harder, you might still have a chance of getting a CDL, especially if you get help from a lawyer immediately after you’re charged with DWI. Here’s what to know about this issue. 

What Affects Your Ability to Get a CDL in Texas?

To get a CDL, you must demonstrate a clean driving record. When the Texas Department of Public Safety checks your record and sees a DWI, they might be hesitant to issue a license. But that doesn’t mean they will always deny you one. 

If you got the DWI several years ago, your odds of getting a CDL are higher than if you got the DWI a few months ago. In fact, after you get a DWI, there’s a one-year disqualification period you must wait out before you even apply for a CDL.

DWI isn’t the only blemish on your record that could make it hard to get a CDL. The same difficulties will occur if you have a few speeding tickets, have driven on a suspended license, or have ever left the scene of an accident. 

Can You Get a Truck Driving Job with a DWI?

While you might get a CDL despite a DWI, the real issue is that you might find it hard to get a job driving a truck. Most employers prefer not to hire drivers with a DWI. This is especially the case in a competitive job market. 

However, this doesn’t mean you’ll never find a job as a truck driver. As long as you have just one DWI – not multiple offenses – there may still be a chance, particularly if it happened more than five years ago. If you can show you’re a great driver who comes highly recommended with an otherwise spotless record, you could get a truck driving job after a DWI.

Can a Texas Lawyer Help?

While a DWI won’t necessarily keep you from getting a CDL and a job, it will make it very difficult. This is why it’s best to avoid a conviction. You’ll need to hire a lawyer immediately for a chance of getting your case dismissed or negotiating down to lesser charges. 

A Texas attorney with experience handling DWI cases knows what details to look at to help avoid conviction, including talking to witnesses or showing that the police or lab employees made a mistake on your case. If you want a chance to avoid getting a DWI, contact lawyers you can trust for a legal defense plan. Contact our Texas office at (972) 573-4532 today. 

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