What new drivers need to know about a CDL

A Class A Commercial Drivers License (CDL) shows carriers and employers that you are a certified and competent licensed Professional Truck Driver, meeting all state standards, this makes you eligible to apply for different CDL A Company Truck Driver Positions. Your CDL should indicate that you are able to meet the requirements of all states in which you operate a commercial motor vehicle, whether it is commercial vehicles or trucks not owned by or contracted with any state motor carrier. For more information on the CDL, visit our page on the New CDL Process.

After your CDL is approved, you can drive a commercial motor vehicle as a Regular CDL driver only when you hold an approved Commercial Driver’s License (CDL).

A CDL is a Class A CDL, with a Class 4 restricted rating, so you can drive a heavier-duty truck as long as you aren’t subject to a restricted rating. For more information on what a Class 4 restricted rating is, check out our page on Class 4 Restrictions.

NOTE: States must use a CDL rating, not an open endorsement, to indicate that the applicant has held a commercial driver’s license for the required time, and is able to operate a commercial motor vehicle.

See page 10 for more information on CDLs and driving.

To process your application for a CDL or to obtain a complete listing of all states where you are eligible to drive, go to our CDL page.

Is my CDL vehicle equipped with a gas taximeter and/or a mileage recorder?

Every CDL driver is required to have these features. Before a CDL can be used, your vehicle must have gas taximeter and/or mileage recorder, depending on the type of CDL you are applying for.

You can have the gas taximeter or mileage recorder installed as long as it is factory equipped. If your vehicle is not equipped with either of these features and you wish to complete your CDL application, you will need to provide the manufacturer’s contact information. To view a list of manufacturers of vehicle diagnostics and computer systems for vehicles equipped with gas taximeter and/or mileage recorder, go to our A-Z of Vehicle Diagnostic Systems and Engine Diagnostics.

Can I receive an endorsement for a Class M driver’s license?

You can get an endorsement for a Class M driver’s license, but if you do, your Class M driver’s license must be limited. To apply for a Class M driver’s license, you must pass the National Driver’s License Examiner (NDLE) exam.

A Class M endorsement requires:

Valid commercial driver’s license (CDL) with an error-free driving record

On-road driving experience no less than 3 years, unless you are endorsed for an enhanced class

At least 85% of the hours required for the class

and three of the required classes (GDL 3 and 4)

A Class M endorsement does not meet any of the other requirements of a Class M driver’s license, or qualify you for a restricted driver’s license.

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Phone: (850) 792-2546
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