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FMCSA Issuing Waivers To Help Truckers With Expiring CDLs
   January 4, 2021
FMCSA

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is at it again. This time, by providing relief for truck drivers struggling through license renewal. Thank gosh we have someone who can stick up for the learner’s permits rarely given an honest chance. Let alone the medical cards due to the ongoing pandemic.


The extension goes into effect through the 28th of February, 2021. This allows truck drivers extra time to renew what they need to. You would almost expect more out of an agency that is trying to quicken deliveries through the U.S.


The FMCSA has sent out multiple waivers for truck drivers with expiring certifications to hurry up and pay attention. After all, the previous waiver was set to expire on December 31, 2020.


Does that makes sense to you? Kind of goofy to me.


But, trust us. The FMCSA cares.

The FMCSA has explained by now a couple of times their problems. That drivers in plenty of states had to go through so many hardships. With operations shut down in some places, truckers have found it difficult. They can’t just go to licensing agencies when they’re trying to re-up their expiring licenses.


The FMCSA has additionally shown that many medical care providers are typical for cancelling regular appointments. This may be due to the COVID-19 crisis, most likely, that hinders truck drivers unable to get the physical exam.


The following is what the waiver is able to perform, according to the FMCSA.


1. Waives until February 28, 2021, for CDLs due for renewal on or after March 1, 2020, the requirement in 49 CFR 383.73(b)(9) and 383.73(d)(6) that States make CDLs valid for no more than 8 years from the date of issuance or renewal. Under this waiver, States may, at their discretion, extend the validity of CDLs that expired on or after March 1, 2020 beyond the 8-year maximum set forth in the FMCSRs.



2. Waives until February 28, 2021, for CLPs that are due for renewal on or after March 1, 2020, the requirement in 49 CFR 383.73(a)(2)(iii) and 383.25(c) that States make CLPs valid for no more than one year from the date of issuance without requiring CLP holders to retake the general and endorsement knowledge tests. Under this waiver, States may, at their discretion, extend the validity of CLPs that expired on or after March 1, 2020 beyond the one-year maximum set forth in the FMCSRs without requiring the CLP holders to retake the general and endorsement knowledge tests.



3. Waives until February 28, 2021, the requirement under 49 CFR 383.25(e) that CLP holders wait 14 days to take the CDL skills test.


Thought that was it?

4. Waives until February 28, 2021, the requirement under 49 CFR 391.45 that CDL holders, CLP holders, and non-CDL drivers have a medical examination and certification, provided that they have proof of a valid medical certification and any required medical variance (as defined in 49 CFR 390.5T such as an exemption letter or a skill performance evaluation certificate) that was issued for a period of 90 days or longer and that expired on or after September 1, 2020.



5. Waives until February 28, 2021, the requirement under 49 CFR 383.71(h)(3) that, in order to maintain the medical certification status of “certified,” CDL or CLP holders provide the SDLA with an original or copy of a subsequently issued medical examiner’s certificate and any required medical variance, provided that they have proof of a valid medical certification or medical variance that expired on or after September 1, 2020.


But wait, there’s more!

6. Waives until February 28, 2021, the requirement under 49 CFR 383.73(o)(2) that the SDLA change the CDL or CLP holder’s medical certification status to “not certified” upon the expiration of the medical examiner’s certificate or medical variance, provided that they have proof of a valid medical certification or medical variance that expired on or after September 1, 2020.



7. Waives until February 28, 2021, the requirements under 49 CFR 383.73(o)(4) that the State Driver Licensing Agency initiate a CDL or CLP downgrade upon the expiration of the medical examiner’s certificate or medical variance, provided that the CDL or CLP holders have proof of a valid medical certification or medical variance that expired on or after September 1, 2020.



8. In accordance with 49 CFR 383.23(a)(1) and 391.41(a)(1)(i), until February 28, 2021, FMCSA continues to recognize the validity of commercial driver’s licenses issued by Canadian Provinces and Territories and Licencias Federales de Conductor issued by the United Mexican States, in accordance with 49 CFR part 383, when such jurisdictions issue a similar notice or declaration extending the validity date of the medical examination and certification and/or validity of the corresponding commercial driver’s license due to interruption to government service resulting from COVID-19.

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