Medical Certification Compliance Deadline Fast Approaching


The deadline for drivers to comply with the new medical certification rule is fast approaching. All drivers must submit their information by January 30th of the new year or risk having their CDL suspended.

According to the FMCSA, in addition to submitting your information to the state drivers licensing agencies, you must keep a paper copy of all of your medical certifications with you until January 30th of 2014, at which point the federal electronic database will be complete.

If any driver is not able to provide proof of medical certification, they may be placed out of service until documentation can be presented.

If you are a small fleet owner, you must also keep copies of all of your employee’s medical certificates on file.


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38 comments. Add a comment.

    • says

      Anyone currently carrying a CDL license. You must have a DOT physical. Now to be registered in a Federal data base. All the examining doctors will be registered as qualified to give these examines.

      Note: granny and all others still not required.

  1. PKG says

    My big question is, and I’m afraid to try to ask the driver license place, do I have to still be an active trucker in order to keep my CDL, or can I just go to a random place and get a generic medical checkup and card to keep my license?

    I’ve worked too hard to get that CDL, I don’t want to lose it.

    • says

      No. You don’t have to drive. Just need a DOT physical registered with the FEDS.

      But you can bet, sooner or later, anyone who is not an active CDL driver, will eventually have to give up the CDL, DOT physical or not…. a command and control situation. Insurers and such want maximum profit…..that is why you see drivers having a hard time getting back on the road and employers asking for 1-2-3 years immediate previous employment as a CDL driver. The training is poor from the big carriers, ask any England driver how the system works. Get them in training…get them to lease a truck…then if they quit, they can’t come back to work without more than a year’s experience. Got that straight from a driver in our yard who trained/leased with England… he took two days off and it took 3 months to recoup those
      two days off in revenue. My nephew was payed 11 cents a mile on 2000 miles with a driver/trainer who had 8 years experience from the 80’s and and lost a job, so came back to driving. The trainer was getting 11 cents a mile too, on 2000 total miles a week to the truck. I saw the pay stubs at Sapp’s in Denver.

      Too many of these stories in circulation…. so keep the CDL fresh…. sooner or later it may be
      worthless if you aren’t using it.

      Government is beholden to Banks….and the insurers in this industry control the DOT/FMCSA
      with lobbyist in Congress… who is who’s pocket?

    • Jerry says

      yes you have to have medical certificate to keep CDL license, but check local state laws, in some states if you are not employed by a carrier and actively using you’re CDL and can PROVE this you can lose the CDL part of the license, here in Ohio you can’t just keep renewing a CDL license because you want too, if one is no longer employed in the industry or use them everyday the lovely state drops the endorsement, last time I renewed I had to give my employer info so they could get verification if needed be, personally I think it’s BS but kind of hard to argue with state laws, just another fine example of how they screw us every time we turn around

    • JR Pilot says

      Just go to a registered Medical facility approved by the DOT and get the MEDICAL ($122.00 USD) an present it to your Local State Driver Lic. for “scanning”. Once that’s done your Lic. is good to go, even if your Not driving at the moment. When your medical expires your CDL privileges also expire and your CDL Driver Lic. turns into a “regular” and you CAN’T Drive Big trucks until you provide another Medical for scanning. (I just went thru that procedure for my Renewal in FL) *After over 20 yrs driving OTR, left for an Armed Security Job) OTR Trucking is NO longer worth the price paid, socially, medically, financially and Family wise.

  2. Brian says

    I don’t drive anymore but I still want to keep my CDL. Can someone point me to a link to find out what I specifically need to do or submit. I’m in Washington, is it on the Washington license website?

    • Michael says

      Same boat here. Called the D.O.L. and they told me that Washington State requires a copy of your DOT physical (long form) for all new licenses and renewals. If your DOT physical was issued before the new standards were in put in effect, then you need to get a new compliant physical done and give a copy to the D.O.L. before January 30th, 2014.

      • stayingback says

        no mike, incorrect, lets say you just renewed your physical in November……You are good for 2 years, tHEN you must find the Doctor who is certified………

        March 2014 starts the new law…………many of yopu fo9lks that use your own private doctors, Outta get it done prior to the new law……….Cause I tell ya what, You better be in tip-top condition……………No more Fatso’s….No more High blood pressures that get ‘covered’ up..No More Thick Necks……No more Decayed teeth causing health issues…No More Fungus Toes…….

        They Want.Young,Dumb,Healthy Kids that know NOTHING driving these trucks………..i cant wait too see the devastation on the highways………Look around Its already happening

    • Jordon says

      If you don’t have a current medical card just go to a DMV and self certify intrastate (not interstate). That will place a restriction on your license designated with a U. But if you do that, don’t get caught hauling interstate cargo or you’ll be put out of service and issued a citation for not having a valid CDL.

      I’m the safety guy for a Seattle trucking company. A couple of our drivers certified intrastate instead of interstate and they didn’t have to show a medical card.

    • Larry says

      Yup the medical card and a downloadable form checked with if your running interstate or intrastate. The Doctors are also having to go through a bunch of bs to be DOT certified.

  3. robin says

    gads, it is getting to look like McDonalds is looking much better to work at.

    that being said, the above link is the best place to get the official information.
    By the way, SDLA acronym is used a lot in this explanation and SDLA= State Drivers License Agencies.

    Piece of advice… when you bring in your medical certificate to your local DMV, be sure to get a receipt as a friend of mine found out the hard way at a weigh station that DMV didn’t process the paperwork properly and his CDL was suspended and he was placed out of service and not allowed to drive the truck until it was corrected.

    it is still unclear whether or not he now has a suspension on his record because of this.

    Speaking of suspensions… if you live in Oregon by way and you get a random survey from DMV asking you about your insurance coverage and giving you 30 days to respond, DO NOT THROW THAT AWAY because if Oregon does not received that survey, your license will be suspended.

  4. says

    For Colorado, you can fax the photo copy of your medical card/drivers license to 303-205-5709 and confirm the receipt by the State of Colorado DMV via a second number, 303-205-5709. I called the Northglenn, Colorado DMV office ,open from 8-5pm, and received that info from someone in the know, at (720) 929-8636. You can also walk it in and they will copy it or they can also provide you an email address to send it to.
    The national data base is incomplete and why would the government be efficient enough to have a website to securely give your information? They only make demands, not give service.

    Can anyone say OBAMACARE?

  5. says

    PKG, don’t be afraid. Just call your state DMV office and they can supply your information. The Feds are forcing this med card situation into a registered doctor situation so there will be no phony med cards. Any med center, like Concentra or others, I don’t work for these, just a driver….
    can get you that medical card if you qualify. Even if you don’t drive. Otherwise you CDL becomes a hostage, driving or not.

    Git ‘er done!

  6. says

    it has to be an FMCSA/DOT registered doctor after the deadline and you must have a DOT physical, not just a generic physical. That is why the information is required before January,2014, so if you have a DOT physical….it’s legitimate.

  7. says

    This is something where by everyone, not just truckers, should have a physical to drive, a DOT physical….. and pre-licensing drug screen. We all share the road, like it or not, so even granny should have the above. Level the playing field, as the feds like to say. You will find a lot of people who are marginal because of heath issues, too many drugs will be put to the curb.

    this will cut out a lot of accidents.

  8. donald Johnson says

    My licence comes due in feb. I think ill get a regular drivers licence.

    I have over 800,000 miles with no accidents and not so much as a ticket,but i cant drive a truck because the experience isn’t resent . heck with them let less experience drive and save insurance dollers

  9. says

    This has been a 2 year process and January 30, 2014 is the drop deadline. All CDL holders must have a current Medical Card on file with the State where they are licensed or you will loose commercial driving privileges and be downgraded to a Class D license. I am a Certified Medical Examiner, I have had several drivers who let their Health Card expire and have already been downgraded. I am obligated to post your medical status on the National Registry withing 30 days of your exam. They are in the process of change that regulation to daily reporting. Their concern is doctor shopping. You do not need to drive to keep your CDL status but you must have a Medical Card or Exemption on file. The next hoop to jump through comes on May 21, 2014. It will be your or your employers duty to verify that the Medical Examiner who performs your exam is Certified and listed on the National Registry.

    FMCSA has said that there are just over 10,000 health care professionals who have registered on the National Registry website. However, less than 3,000 Certified Medical Examiners have taken and passed the certification test. From information provided by the testing organization, it is not uncommon for everyone to delay until near the deadline whenever there is a requirement to take a test. FMCSA has set a goal of achieving 20,000 CMEs by May 21, 2014. Word to the wise you may want to get your next Medical Card prior to May 21, 2014. Dr

    • Jordon says

      Sorry Dr Jim, but you are incorrect. This federal regulation is designed to ensure that drivers moving interstate cargo have a valid medical certificate. There are some states, that under some circumstances, allow drivers that are moving intrastate cargo to do so without a medical certificate.

      If you certify interstate you have to have show them a valid medical certificate. If you certify intrastate, you don’t.

    • says

      So, Dr. Jim. Would you please enlighten all of us drivers with the new testing guidelines you will have to follow to certify us to drive?

  10. stayingBack says

    IF you just have taken a DOT physical..its good for 2 years..after it expires THEN you must take the Physical with the New Law requiring Doctors be certified..Thats What i Read, New Law starts March 2014

    So you guys that Panic at Doctors office..You are REALLY in for it now………..You’ll be examined like a God-Dam US Marine…. No More Beer Bellies..No More thick Necks..No More snoring..No More missing teeth…No More Fungi Toenails..NOPE, You Better Have Good vision and a Very Low blood Pressure to boot.

    Pretty Sad if you ask me…But Its ok tho, When Truckers just say, “Enough is Enough” Someone will listen.

    i mean,For example, California is giving an extra 6 years to Out of state Owner-operators to be cARB compliant..6 MORE YEARS, Why? Cause they knew the messed up.


      • Sean says


        They can’t force you to buy car insurance if you don’t drive a car. And they can’t force you to buy car insurance if you don’t own a car.

        Health insurance doesn’t give you the option. You are fined (or now taxed) for not buying health insurance. There is a difference.

        As for the topic of keeping a CDL, Washington sent me a letter saying I need to give them information on the company I drive for. Therefore, after 30+ years and well over 2 million miles accident free , I am giving up my CDL. And I’m just over 50 years old.

        Could anyone imagine, if people with College degrees, had to turn their degrees back in if they were no longer employed in the field of studies the degree was for?

  11. Bigredb61 says

    I don’t know if much better roads and great trucks makes for a better truck driving life now.
    As I look back on my 26 years from the middle 40’s to 1971 we had bad roads and old trucks.
    Consider this, that some of the trips from Denton county Texas to California was made in Chevrolets, International, like 190’s gasoline powered and GMC’s 5000. It wasn’t till around 1955/6 that B model Mack’s began to show up where I lived. For Texas they were great as we don’t have big passes and not too many hills. Yet in California they would become sick, even the ones that had old style turbo blowers, and they weren’t equipped with pyrometer gauges. So if the hand that was driving that kind, and didn’t know to stay backed out of it, he could melt the manifold and run in down the side of the block. That was the thermo dyne engine. I have a daughter and her husband that Owens a Peterbilt and spread axle refer and its hard to keep their head above water.

  12. stayingback says

    Another new law that is going to ‘hurt’ the driver…the ‘real’ truck driver.
    Do these medical examiners that are ‘willing’ to be DOY compliant come 2014 rEALIZE they can make and ‘BREAK’ families?
    I would think their safeties may be jeopardized due to the fact they can STOP a driver from his income and livelihood. Ya see…Physicals were easy to pass..Even with conditions, A driver can persuade..So hew can work.

    I’ll give you folks a perfect example on what happens here…..

    lets say a 48 year oild truck Driver that has been driving for 25 years of his life…..Now,he cant pass the ‘NEW’ standards of the physical. Driving a truck is all he knows, he Cant get a decent Job to Commensurate what he has done for so long..
    It would be like telling a Steel worker that he cant work anymore because he has a medical condition……UNION wont allow that. You get it yet??

    Trucking Needs representation, Without it..Your job is never safe. Anyone can do you anyway they please……..Its pretty sad I personally have dealt with this for 23 years………
    Point is, You start failing ‘seasoned’ Drivers that have established jobs ande families…You will open up a new chapter in hell. Just Watch.

  13. James says

    If you aren’t using your CDL but what to keep it you can without getting the new DOT mandated medical card. All you have to do is go fill out the form at the DMV and check the box for exempted intrastate on your license. This is for bus drivers, farm equipment drivers, drivers for medical transportation, etc. You won’t be able to drive an 18 wheeler across state lines, but if you want to keep your CDL without getting a DOT card every two years if you aren’t currently driving, this is what to do. Then in a few years if you want to go back to interstate truck driving, go get your DOT card, then go to the DMV and have them change your status. No big deal.

  14. duane says

    like they don’t already know this info, just another hoop to jump through.
    they just want to make it look like they care, are doing something, and looking busy.

    • Jordon says

      Do you believe that the number of drivers that forge their medical certificate is insignificant?

      I’m in the business and I often see medical certificates that look odd. I’ve called doctors and asked, and you wouldn’t believe how often I hear… “I haven’t seen that guy is 5 years.”

      • Sean says

        Not sure I would continue seeing a Doctor that answers any question on my health, or health records of any sort.

  15. Terry says

    As a 55 year old who began driving on my 17 birthday, it seems to me that truck drivers as well as the companies they work for, have become a bunch of sheep just being led along the path, by a government that has bent over backwards to make it virtually impossible for anyone to ever be in complete complaince. There isn’t a tax, fee, or charge the government thinks we can’t afford. We are easy because, most people have no idea how the products they use or the streets they drive on come from, and just see trucks as big things on the road that slow them down getting to the bar after work, so who cares what the government does to them. Now they want to be able to keep tabs on our lives far beyond anything common sense would say they need. It will never happen because company drivers would be fired and most owner opperater would go under, but truckers should just say hell no, we won’t take any more fed interference with our jobs and park their trucks for thirty days. We used to be an independent bunch, but we just go along with whatever they toss our way theese days, and I for one will give up my interstate lisences, just to make some kind of stand against a government that is getting further out of hand by the day. Retirement isn’t an option, but career change is in my future. This isn’t even close to the industry I once made a living in, and as an owner/opperator it’s becoming harder to both comply and compete which in the end is probably what this is all about, since you never see the DOT with the creepers out going over a Walmart truck on a spot inspection.

  16. Eric says


    Whether you’re currently driving or not, go to the DMV and tell them you need the form to submit your medical card. Fill out the form and fax the form along with your current (non-expired) medical card to the fax number on the form. Then call the phone number on the form to verify they received it. This is what I had to do. My medical card was about to expire so I just went to the doctor and got a new one. Same as always. Then after my old one expired I received a letter saying my CDL was temporarily suspended until I submitted the paperwork. If the paperwork was not submitted within 20 days, my CDL was permanently suspended. I immediately called them and got the form from the DMV and faxed it over. All is good now. But take care of it ASAP so you don’t lose your license.

  17. Sean says

    So, if I want to keep my CDL, I have to lower the rating to an “intrastate” level in the state of Washington.

    Get this though, I will be lying on the form when I do this. According to Washington, all I have to do is make up a story about what I “might” drive, where I “might” drive and what I “might” be hauling when I do. I “might” just tell them to ……….. Well, you get the picture.

    A world of make believe!

    Sorry, but I won’t stoop to lying on a legal form.

    “Could anyone imagine, if people with College degrees, had to turn their degrees back in if they were no longer employed in the field of studies the degree was for?”

  18. carlos says

    So, I just found this notice I got several months ago about this med card requirement for my CDL. The problem is I didn’t do anything about it and now my CDL license is suspended. I’m going to the DMV on Monday here in Florida to rectify this issue. Anyone have any idea what will happpen? Is this an easy fix or do I have to jump thru hoops? Any info would be great, thx. Carlo

  19. Francis Andres says

    I wanted to know I got my medical card b4 my expiration date but I gave a copy to my employer to fax it over but apparently didn’t so now I’m down to a regular license what do I need to do to fix this problem this is my livelyhood

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