FMCSA Updated Emergency Declaration Regarding Expired CDLs

Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has taken additional emergency measures to ensure the integrity of the nation’s supply chain during this critical time by (1) extending the validity of expiring commercial driver licenses until June 30, 2020, and (2) deciding not to take adverse actions against drivers operating commercial motor vehicles with expired CDLs or medical examination certificates.
Various states throughout the U.S. have issued orders closing or limiting the operations of state bureau of motor vehicle offices, making the process for obtaining and issuing CDLs difficult if not impossible for both drivers and bureaus.  Social distancing requirements have made it difficult to renew or obtain the required medical examination certificates as well.  Accordingly, commercial motor vehicle drivers are facing expiring CDLs, commercial learning permits and medical examination certificates. 
Under the FMCSA’s emergency waiver and enforcement notice, a commercial motor vehicle driver with a valid CDL and medical examination certificate as of February 29, 2020 that is set to expire on or after March 1, 2020, will not be penalized for not having renewed and submitted current information until June 30, 2020.  Further, a prospective commercial motor vehicle driver with a commercial learning permit current as of February 29, 2020 and set to expire on or after March 1, 2020, will not have to retake the knowledge test until June 30, 2020.  Finally, a driver with a commercial learning permit does not have to wait the required 14 days before taking the CDL skills test.
These are unprecedented times, and the FMCSA has taken unprecedented measures.  The best practice is still to comply with as many of the waived requirements as possible.  If that is not possible, however, it is important to ensure that you have adequate documentation to support why you were unable to comply.  A copy of the waiver can be obtained here, and a copy of the emergency enforcement policy can be obtained here.

Frantz Ward has established a Coronavirus Response Team to assist clients in navigating the multitude of issues presented by the current crisis. For assistance in addressing these issues or in developing other strategies to protect your business, please contact Frantz Ward Partners Brian Kelly or Chris Koehler and they will engage the appropriate members of the response team. 

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