Commercial Drivers License FAQ
I’m a CDL holder that recently received an informational letter from DMV about the new medical certification requirements. Do I need to do anything now?
- The letter you received was sent to ensure that you and other CDL holders had some advance notice of important changes that might impact your commercial driving privileges. Prior to January 30, 2014 you need to submit a copy of a valid medical certificate (medical card) & the Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413). You can find the form here: http://doa.alaska.gov/dmv/forms/pdfs/413.pdf
It is particularly important that you maintain a valid mailing address with DMV, as required by law, so you will receive your notification.
Why did DMV make this change?
- The Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999 required the U.S. Secretary of Transportation to make federal commercial motor vehicle medical certification a part of the commercial driver license. In response, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration published rules in December 2008 that required all states to disqualify CDL holders if they did not maintain medical qualifications. The rule mandates that all states begin to comply by January 30, 2012.
I don’t currently drive a CMV. Will I have to maintain a valid medical certificate (medical card) at DMV to continue holding my CDL?
- Yes, on January 30, 2012, DMV began collecting medical certificates from CDL holders and monitoring expiration dates. No later than January 30, 2014, DMV must have all medical information and be monitoring the medical certificate expiration dates of all CDL holders.
How will I know when it is time for me to send in a copy of my medical certificate (medical card)?
- DMV will send you a warning notice at the address you have on file with DMV. It is very important, therefore, that you maintain a valid address with DMV. If you have not received a notice but need to renew or replace your CDL, you will need to submit a copy of your medical certificate & the Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413) at the time of the renewal or replacement.
Can I submit a copy of my medical certificate (medical card) now?
- Yes, if you’d rather send in a copy of your certificate & the Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413) now, before DMV sends you notification, you may mail it to:
Division of Motor Vehicles
Anchorage Driver Services
1300 W Benson Blvd., Ste 100
Anchorage, AK 99503-3692
- Medical Examiner's Certificates are often two-sided or have two parts. Ensure you submit a copy that is complete and legible. If it is not complete and legible, return to your examiner to have another certificate completed before submitting it to DMV. If the original expiration date is retained and unexpired, a new examination should not be necessary.
- If there is any chance that DMV may not be able to read the license number on the medical card, DMV recommends you either include a copy of the front of your CDL or write your name and license number legibly on a separate piece of paper enclosed in the mailing.
Can my employer submit a copy of my medical certificate (medical card) to DMV for me?
- Yes, your employer may send copies of employee medical certificates & the Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verifications to:
Division of Motor Vehicles
Anchorage Driver Services
1300 W Benson Blvd., Ste 100
Anchorage, AK 99503-3692
Can my medical examiner send the long form (Medical Examination Report for Commercial Driver Fitness Determination) to DMV instead of a copy of the Medical Examiner’s Certificate (medical card)?
- No, if you meet medical standards, your medical examiner must complete the medical card and a copy of that card is the document that must be submitted to DMV along with a Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413).
Can I e-mail a copy of my medical certificate (medical card) to DMV?
- Yes, it must be a copy in .jpg or .pdf format and must include the Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413). Please add your name and driver license number to the e-mail, if not completely legible on the copied medical certificate. The e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Is a photocopy of my medical certificate (medical card) acceptable?
- Yes, DMV encourages you to submit a fully legible photocopy of your certificate. If the copy is not readable, however, DMV may not be able to document your compliance with requirements and/or may request that you mail another copy. We recommend that you include a copy of the front of your CDL or ensure, by some other means that we can identify the name and license number of the person that submitted the medical card.
The information on my Medical Examiner's Certificate is incomplete or not legible. What do I do?
- Return to your examiner to have another certificate completed before submitting it to DMV. If the original expiration date is retained and unexpired, a new examination should not be necessary.
My doctor gave me a copy of the "long form" (Medical Examination Report for Commercial Driver Fitness Determination). Can I send that to DMV instead of a copy of my "medical card" (Medical Examiner’s Certificate)?
- No, the long form includes information DMV does not need or want, and does not include other information from the medical card that DMV requires for compliance with Federal law.
The new Federal regulations only apply to driver’s who operate a CMV, or certify operation of a CMV, in non-excepted interstate commerce. I operate a CMV exclusively in intrastate commerce. Do I still have to submit a medical certificate (medical card)?
- Yes, Alaska DMV requires all CMV drivers to submit proof they meet minimum medical standards. There are small differences in the standards required for non-excepted interstate operation and other driving types that may allow restricted operation of a CMV even if you don’t meet the federal medical standards.
I understand my CDL may be cancelled if I do not provide DMV with a valid medical certificate (medical card). How can I avoid this cancellation?
- You can either submit a copy of a valid medical certificate & a Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413) to DMV or surrender your commercial driving privileges at a DMV office. There is a $20.00 fee to issue a replacement license, without commercial privileges, if you are downgrading because you do not meet the medical standards for holding a CDL.
If I receive notice that my CDL is going to be cancelled because DMV has not received a valid medical certificate (medical card), how much time do I have to submit a new certificate?
- The CDL cancellation will be effective 30 to 60 days after the notice is mailed. However, once your medical certificate expires, you may not legally operate a commercial motor vehicle.
If my CDL is cancelled for not maintaining a current medical certificate (medical card) with DMV, do I have to retake all tests to get a CDL again?
- You will have one year from the cancellation date to obtain your CDL again without having to take the written tests or five years from the cancellation date to obtain another CDL without having to take the road tests again.
Can I operate a non-commercial motor vehicle if my CDL has been cancelled for failure to submit a copy of my medical certificate (medical card)?
- Yes, as long as your non-commercial privileges are not expired, revoked, suspended or cancelled under a separate action, however, it is recommended that you come in and obtain a non commercial license to avoid any confusion with law enforcement if you are pulled over. If you operate a CMV while your CDL is cancelled, you could be cited for operating a vehicle without driving privileges.
The letter I received from DMV referenced the requirement to certify commercial motor vehicle "driving type". Why do I need to certify driving type?
- Some commercial motor vehicle operations are excepted from the need to meet federal medical standards and certain other federal standards. If you do not meet one of these standards, you may still be able to meet Alaska standards for holding a CDL but you would not be able to operate a commercial motor vehicle in unrestricted interstate commerce. Your certification of driving type tells DMV which qualifications you must meet to hold a CDL. DMV strongly recommends that you certify a driving type of "non-excepted interstate" if you meet federal qualifications and there is any chance you may be operating a commercial motor vehicle in unrestricted interstate commerce. Otherwise, your CDL may be needlessly restricted.
When will I have to certify "driving type"?
- You’ll be required to certify driving type each time you renew, replace or upgrade your CDL at a DMV office. You might also be required to certify driving type at the same time you submit a medical certificate (medical card) as a result of a written request from DMV. All CDL holders will have to certify driving type by January 30, 2014.
- The Commercial Driver Medical & Self Certifying Verification (Form 413) is available online here: http://doa.alaska.gov/dmv/forms/pdfs/413.pdf and in DMV offices.
I don’t understand "driving types" and don’t know which type I should certify. What should I do?
- We understand the federal rules are complicated and somewhat confusing. Nearly all drivers should be certifying non-excepted interstate. DMV strongly suggests that you certify non-excepted interstate if you can pass the CDL medical examination and can/will meet the federal requirements and responsibilities identified below:
- Are at least 21 years old;
- Can read and speak the English language sufficiently to converse with the general public, to understand highway traffic signs and signals in the English language, to respond to official inquiries, and to make entries on reports and records;
- Can, by reason of experience, training, or both, safely operate the type of commercial motor vehicle he/she drives;
- Has a currently valid commercial motor vehicle operator's license issued only by one State or jurisdiction;
- Has prepared and furnished the motor carrier that employs him/her with the list of violations or the certificate as required by Part 391.27;
- Is not disqualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle under federal rules (Part 391.15);
- Has successfully completed a driver's road test and has been issued a certificate of driver's road test in accordance with Part 391.31
- Can, by reason of experience, training, or both, determine whether the cargo he/she transports (including baggage in a passenger- carrying commercial motor vehicle) has been properly located, distributed, and secured in or on the commercial motor vehicle he/she drives;
- Is familiar with methods and procedures for securing cargo in or on the commercial motor vehicle he/she drives.
- If you do not or cannot meet these requirements and responsibilities, you will have to certify "excepted interstate" or "non-excepted intrastate". Certification of either of these driving types means your CDL privileges will be restricted.