WASHINGTON — In response to the continuing COVID-19 health crisis, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) on Sept. 18 once again extended a waiver offering relief to commercial drivers who have an expired or soon-to-expire commercial driver’s license (CDL), commercial learner’s permit (CLP) or medical-certification card.
The waiver, initially issued March 24 and then renewed June 15, is now effective until Dec. 31, 2020.
Because many agencies remain closed or are operating at limited capacity, many drivers “may be unable” to renew their licensees or provide medical certificates to state driver licensing agencies, FMCSA notes in the waiver. In addition, some drivers may be unable to get appointments for physical examinations required for DOT health certification.
Under the waiver:
- Drivers who hold a CDL that is due for renewal on or after March 1, 2010, now have until Dec. 31, 2020.
- For drivers who hold a CLP that is due for renewal on or after March 1, 2020, the CLP’s validity is extended through Dec. 31, 2020, without requiring the holder to retake the general and endorsement knowledge tests.
- CLP holders do not have to wait 14 days to take the CDL skills test, effective through Dec. 31, 2020.
- CLD or CLP holders and non-CDL drivers whose medical certification was valid on Feb. 29, 2020 and expired between March 1 and June 1, now have until Oct. 31, 2020 to renew their certification. Drivers whose medical certification expired on or after June 1, 2020, now have until Dec. 31, 2020.
FMCSA specifies that the waiver “does not alter any of the knowledge and skills testing requirements for obtaining either a CDL, a CLP or a necessary endorsement. 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 It does not apply to a CDL or CLP holder if the driver’s privileges have been suspended or withdrawn for traffic offenses. And, this waiver does not authorize states to extend the validity of a non-domiciled CLP or CDL beyond the non-domiciled driver’s approved legal presence.”
To review the entire waiver and its conditions, click here.