FMCSA extends waiver for expiring CDLs again

December 21, 2020

Land Line Staff

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Once again, the FMCSA has extended its waivers for expiring commercial driver’s licenses, commercial learner’s permits and medical cards. The waiver for CDLs and CLPs applies to any licenses or permits that expired after March 1 and medical cards expiring after Sept. 1.

The agency announced last week that the waiver was extended until Feb. 28. It had been set to end Dec. 31. The waiver gives relief to truck drivers with expiring commercial driver’s licenses, commercial learner’s permits, or medical cards during the COVID-19 pandemic.

FMCSA’s original waiver was announced on March 24 and set to last three months. In June, the agency extended the waiver until Sept. 30. In September, a third waiver was extended through the end of the year.

The fourth installment is set to take effect Jan. 1.

FMCSA said that many state driver licensing agencies have been closed or have reduced hours because of the pandemic and that the recent increase in COVID-19 cases has led to some states resuming stay-at-home orders.

“As a result, many CDL and CLP holders may be unable to renew … or provide medical certificates to their state driver licensing agency,” the FMCSA notice stated. “In addition, due to limited operations or backlogs, drivers may be unable to obtain appointments for physical examinations with medical examiners to comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.”

Because of the limited scope, the short duration and other precautions in place, FMCSA said it has determined that a waiver is not expected to negatively affect safety.

“The waiver does not alter any of the knowledge and skills testing requirements for obtaining either a CDL, a CLP, or necessary endorsement,” the notice stated. “It does not allow states to extend the license of a CDL or CLP holder whose credential expired prior to March 1, 2020. It does not apply to a CDL or CLP holder if the driver’s privileges have been suspended or withdrawn for traffic offenses or if the driver is otherwise disqualified to operate a commercial motor vehicle.” LL

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