Driving under the influence (DUI) remains the single greatest cause of motor related fatalities in the state of Montana. In fact, according to the Montana DMV, “Motor vehicle related fatalities and accounts for an alarmingly high 40% to 50% of the total number of motor vehicle related deaths every year.”
Consider: the threat of death is even higher if it is a commercial driver with a Montana CDL who is operating a commercial vehicle.
For this reason, the DUI laws in the state of Montana or much stricter for commercial drivers than for other drivers. For example, Montana CDL drivers, who operate a commercial vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.04% or higher, can be considered legally intoxicated. The BAC for other drivers is 0.08%.
Montana CDL driver refuses to submit to chemical test
Montana CDL drivers have given their implied consent to submit to a chemical test if they have been stopped and arrested for DUI. Montana CDL drivers who refuse to take the chemical test will have their CDL license automatically suspended for one year.
Montana CDL drivers who are stopped, arrested, and refuse the test a second time (within a five year time period) may have their license suspended for life. Montana CDL drivers also will not have the right to get a work permit or any other type of probationary license during the suspension period.
Penalties for DUI conviction for a Montana CDL driver
What happens if you have a Montana CDL and you are convicted of DUI? First, not only will points be added to your driving record, but you will also lose your Montana CDL for one year. If you are transporting hazardous materials and your BAC is higher than 0.04%, your Montana CDL will be suspended for three years.
Montana drivers who drive under the influence and are arrested a second time for DUI may have their Montana CDL suspended for life.
Reinstatement of a Montana CDL after a DUI
After a Montana CDL driver has completed their suspension they may apply to have their CDL reinstated with the Motor Vehicle Division. Steps to reinstatement a Montana CDL may include:
- Taking the road, vision, and knowledge test.
- Completing any alcohol or a comparable program (the agency will send the proof to the Motor Vehicle Division once you have completed the program).
- Paying all necessary reinstatement fees. Fees can be paid in person at the nearest Motor Vehicle Division.
- Maintaining proof of financial responsibility by filing SR-22, if required.
- Installing an ignition interlock device (if required).
Hiring a Montana DUI lawyer
Given that Montana CDL drivers generally need their commercial driver’s license to generate income, saving your Montana CDL can be very important. Contact a DUI lawyer if you have questions about current Montana DUI laws or need help defending your case. This is especially important if this is your second or third DUI offense or your actions have injured or killed another driver.
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