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Can I Lose My CDL Because of a Medical Condition in California?

 Posted on May 10, 2022 in CDL

marin-county-cdl-lawyer.jpgWhen we think of driver’s license suspensions and revocations, we usually assume that the person has lost his or her license because of drunk driving or another criminal offense. However, sometimes, commercial driver’s license holders lose their licenses due to no fault of their own. California has the authority to revoke a person’s driver’s license due to concerns about how a health condition affects their ability to drive safely.  

Mental and Physical Health Problems Can Lead to License Revocation

California law authorizes the DMV to revoke a person’s driver’s license if they have a medical condition that makes them unable to drive safely. Commercial driver’s license holders need their CDL to earn a living. Consequently, the risk of losing their license due to a mental or physical health condition is a very real concern.

Drivers may face license revocation or suspension due to:

  • Cognitive decline caused by dementia or Alzheimer’s

  • Vision loss or blindness caused by cataracts, macular degeneration, or other conditions

  • Sleep disorders like narcolepsy

  • Medical conditions that cause fainting or loss of consciousness such as epilepsy and diabetes

  • Drug or alcohol addiction

  • Any other medical issue that makes the driver unable to drive safely

DMV Reexamination Hearings  

Fortunately, the state of California cannot suspend a person’s license without giving them a chance to prove that they are capable of safely operating a motor vehicle. Reexamination hearings or physical and mental hearings (P&M hearings) are used to assess how a person’s medical condition affects their driving ability. These hearings are usually held at a DMV facility and conducted by a DMV driver safety hearing officer. During the hearing, the safety officer may:

  • Ask the driver about any accidents he or she has been involved in as well as his or her overall driving history

  • Review the driver’s Driver Medical Evaluation (DME) form which shows the driver’s medical history, diagnosis, and other pertinent information

  • Require the driver to take a written test, vision examination, or driving skills test

  • Listen to the driver’s testimony and allow the driver to tell his or her side of the story

  • Listen to testimony from the driver’s physician or other medical providers

If a driver does not show up for a P&M hearing, the DMV will likely suspend or revoke the person’s license.

Contact a San Francisco License Revocation Defense Lawyer

Dealing with a serious health problem is already stressful enough. Losing your driver’s license only adds to the stress and frustration. If you are a CDL holder and your livelihood is being threatened by a physical and mental hearing, contact Napa reexamination attorney Paul Burglin for help. Call 415-729-7300 for a free, confidential consultation.



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