Eric J. Dirga, P.A.

A Florida Trial Attorney

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Florida Law Regarding Commercial Drivers Licenses

Section 316.61, Florida Statutes

Information provided by Eric J. Dirga, P.A., Orlando - Statewide Service

Last Updated: November 5, 2015

NOTE: New Law Effective January 1, 2014!!
Below we have listed the specific law regarding the penalties for tickets given to commercial driver's license holders. New amendments are underlined. Sections removed are struck through. If you have any questions do not hesitate to call (407) 841-5555.


Section 322.61, Florida Statutes: Disqualification from operating a commercial motor vehicle.--

[The 2 violations in 3 years provision: 60 Day Suspension]

(1) A person who, for offenses occurring within a 3-year period, is convicted of two of the following serious traffic violations or any combination thereof, arising in separate incidents committed in a commercial motor vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 60 days. [and]

A person who, for offenses occurring within a 3-year period, is convicted of two of the following serious traffic violations, or any combination thereof, arising in separate incidents committed in a noncommercial motor vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 60 days if such convictions result in the suspension, revocation, or cancellation of the licenseholder's driving privilege:

(a) A violation of any state or local law relating to motor vehicle traffic control, other than a parking violation, a weight violation, or a vehicle equipment violation, arising in connection with a crash resulting in death or personal injury to any person;

(b) Reckless driving, as defined in s. 316.192;

(c) Careless driving, as defined in s. 316.1925;

(d) Fleeing or attempting to elude a law enforcement officer, as defined in s. 316.1935;

(c)(e) Unlawful speed of 15 miles per hour or more above the posted speed limit;

(f) Driving a commercial motor vehicle, owned by such person, which is not properly insured;

(d)(g) Improper lane change, as defined in s. 316.085;

(e)(h) Following too closely, as defined in s. 316.0895;

(f)(i) Driving a commercial vehicle without obtaining a commercial driverdriver's license;

(g)(j) Driving a commercial vehicle without the proper class of commercial driverdriver's license or commercial learner's permit or without the proper endorsement; or

(h)(k) Driving a commercial vehicle without a commercial driverdriver's license or commercial learner's permit in possession, as required by s. 322.03. Any individual who provides proof to the clerk of the court or designated official in the jurisdiction where the citation was issued, by the date the individual must appear in court or pay any fine for such a violation, that the individual held a valid commercial driver's license on the date the citation was issued is not guilty of this offense.

[The 3 violations in 3 years provision: 120 Day Suspension]

(2)(a) Any person who, for offenses occurring within a 3-year period, is convicted of three serious traffic violations specified in subsection (1) or any combination thereof, arising in separate incidents committed in a commercial motor vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, including but not limited to the penalty provided in subsection (1), be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 120 days.

(b) A holder of a driverdriver's license or commercial learner's permit who, for offenses occurring within a 3-year period, is convicted of three serious traffic violations specified in subsection (1) or any combination thereof arising in separate incidents committed in a noncommercial motor vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, including, but not limited to, the penalty provided in subsection (1), be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 120 days if such convictions result in the suspension, revocation, or cancellation of the licenseholder's driving privilege.

[The 1 violations in 0 years provision: 1 year CDL suspension]

(3)(a) Except as provided in subsection (4), any person who is convicted of one of the offenses listed in paragraph (b) while operating a commercial vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 1 year:

(b) Except as provided in subsection (4), any holder of a commercial driver license or commercial learner’s permit who is convicted of one of the offenses listed in this paragraph while operating a noncommercial motor vehicle shall, in addition to any other applicable penalties, be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 1 year:

1. Driving a commercial motor vehicle while he or she is under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance;

2. Driving a commercial motor vehicle while the alcohol concentration of his or her blood, breath, or urine is .04 percent or higher;

3. Leaving the scene of a crash involving a commercial motor vehicle driven by such person;

4. Using a commercial motor vehicle in the commission of a felony;

5. Driving a commercial motor vehicle while in possession of a controlled substance;

5.6. Refusing to submit to a test to determine his or her alcohol concentration while driving a commercial motor vehicle;

6. Driving a commercial motor vehicle when, as a result of prior violations committed operating a commercial motor vehicle, his or her commercial driver license or commercial learner’s permit is revoked, suspended, or canceled, or he or she is disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle; or

7. Driving a commercial vehicle while the licenseholder's commercial driver's license is suspended, revoked, or canceled or while the licenseholder is disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle; or

7.8. Causing a fatality through the negligent operation of a commercial motor vehicle.

[The 1 violations in 0 years provision: 3 year CDL suspension]

(4) Any person who is transporting hazardous materials in a vehicle that is required to be placarded in accordance with Title 49 C.F.R. part 172, subpart F shall, upon conviction of an offense specified in subsection (3), be disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle for a period of 3 years. The penalty provided in this subsection shall be in addition to any other applicable penalty.

[The 2 violations in 0 years provision: permanent CDL revocation]

(5) A person who is convicted of two violations specified in subsection (3) which were committed while operating a commercial motor vehicle, or any combination thereof, arising in separate incidents shall be permanently disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle. A holder of a commercial driver license or commercial learner’s permit who is convicted of two violations specified in subsection (3) which were committed while operating any motor vehicle arising in separate incidents shall be permanently disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle. The penalty provided in this subsection is in addition to any other applicable penalty.

[The drug manufacturing violation in 0 years provision: permanent CDL revocation]

(6) Notwithstanding subsections (3), (4), and (5), any person who uses a commercial motor vehicle in the commission of any felony involving the manufacture, distribution, or dispensing of a controlled substance, including possession with intent to manufacture, distribute, or dispense a controlled substance, shall, upon conviction of such felony, be permanently disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle. Notwithstanding subsections (3), (4), and (5), any holder of a commercial driver driver's license or commercial learner’s permit who uses a noncommercial motor vehicle in the commission of any felony involving the manufacture, distribution, or dispensing of a controlled substance, including possession with intent to manufacture, distribute, or dispense a controlled substance, shall, upon conviction of such felony, be permanently disqualified from operating a commercial motor vehicle. The penalty provided in this subsection is in addition to any other applicable penalty.

[CDL reduced to Class E provision]

(7) A person whose privilege to operate a commercial motor vehicle is disqualified under this section may, if otherwise qualified, be issued a Class E driver driver's license, pursuant to s. 322.251.

[Out-of-Service violations]

(8) A driver who is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a violation of an out-of-service order while driving a commercial motor vehicle is disqualified as follows:

(a) At least Not less than 180 days but not nor more than 1 year if the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a first violation of an out-of-service order.

(b) At least Not less than 2 years but not nor more than 5 years if, for offenses occurring during any 10-year period, the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed two violations of out-of-service orders in separate incidents.

(c) At least Not less than 3 years but not nor more than 5 years if, for offenses occurring during any 10-year period, the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed three or more violations of out-of-service orders in separate incidents.

(d) At least Not less than 180 days but not nor more than 2 years if the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a first violation of an out-of-service order while transporting hazardous materials required to be placarded under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, 49 U.S.C. ss. 5101 et seq., or while operating motor vehicles designed to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver. A driver is disqualified for a period of at least not less than 3 years but not nor more than 5 years if, for offenses occurring during any 10-year period, the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed any subsequent violations of out-of-service orders, in separate incidents, while transporting hazardous materials required to be placarded under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, 49 U.S.C. ss. 5101 et seq., or while operating motor vehicles designed to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver.

[Railroad-highway Grade Crossing Violations]

(9) A driver who is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed an offense of operating a commercial motor vehicle in violation of federal, state, or local law or regulation pertaining to one of the following six offenses at a railroad-highway grade crossing must be disqualified for the period of time specified in subsection (10):

(a) For drivers who are not always required to stop, failing to slow down and check that the tracks are clear of approaching trains.

(b) For drivers who are not always required to stop, failing to stop before reaching the crossing if the tracks are not clear.

(c) For drivers who are always required to stop, failing to stop before driving onto the crossing.

(d) For all drivers, failing to have sufficient space to drive completely through the crossing without stopping.

(e) For all drivers, failing to obey a traffic control device or all directions of an enforcement official at the crossing.

(f) For all drivers, failing to negotiate a crossing because of insufficient undercarriage clearance.

(10)(a) A driver must be disqualified for at least 60 days if the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a first violation of a railroad-highway grade crossing violation.

(b) A driver must be disqualified for at least not less than 120 days if, for offenses occurring during any 3-year period, the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a second railroad-highway grade crossing violation in separate incidents.

(c) A driver must be disqualified for at least not less than 1 year if, for offenses occurring during any 3-year period, the driver is convicted of or otherwise found to have committed a third or subsequent railroad-highway grade crossing violation in separate incidents.

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