Change The Way You Approach Getting A Minnesota Cdl - Class A License

by Joshua on October 30, 2014

If you are looking to obtain a Class A commercial driver’s license in the state of Minnesota, there are requirements and procedures you need to know about to be successful in your quest to get your hands on one. There is a growing demand in this industry, as there is a national shortage of drivers, as well as in the state of Minnesota. Here is what you need to know to get your CDL, and other special endorsements.

Minnesota State Requirements for a CDL

You will be required to pass a basic skills test as part of your journey on getting a commercial driver’s license. You will also be asked to take additional tests if you are looking for a specific endorsement such as one for a vehicle with air brakes or a school bus.

There are also fees that apply for a Class A license in the state of Minnesota. The current fee is $45.25.

Where To Apply

All of the testing and application for a commercial driver’s license in the state of Minnesota takes place at one of the many driver and vehicle services locations that are scattered around the state. You will need to bring your birth certificate as well as your driver’s license. Here you will be asked to fill out an application.

The Latest Federal Government Requirements

You will be asked to certify what type of vehicle you will be driving. You will be certified in one of the following four categories:

  • Excepted intrastate
  • Non-excepted intrastate
  • Excepted interstate
  • Non-excepted interstate

If you make the choice of non-excepted interstate, you will be asked to give the Department of Public Safety a medical certificate from the federal government. In additional to state requirements, there are also federal requirements for all commercial drivers. The Commercial Motor Vehicle Act of 1986 was passed to improve the safety of the nation’s highways. It helps to ensure that drivers of big rigs are fully qualified to drive them, and take those who are not qualified off of the roads.

It did not establish any federal licensing, as states still issue CDLs. But it did establish minimum requirements for states. In the days before this bill was passed, many drivers were not properly trained to drive.

Other CDL Endorsements and Training

Since the passage of the USA Patriotic Act, anyone that drives a truck that transports hazardous materials must have a set of fingerprints on file and must pass a background check. Background checks for these drivers are done by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). This is intended to protect citizens from the dangers of terrorists using hazmat cargo to do mass amounts of damage to an urban area.

If a driver is disqualified by the TSA because of a background check, it can be appealed or one can seek a special waiver. But, if you are guilty of a crime that disqualifies you, one will have to declare any and all disqualifying conditions and give up a hazmat endorsement to the state department of motor vehicles where they got their license.

First, before you get a hazmat endorsement , you must have a CDL. If you want a hazmat endorsement, you can apply for the needed background check from the TSA. You can do this over the internet, or you can contact a TSA agent. Either way, they are going to want three things from you and those are:

  • Proof of your identity
  • Proof that you are a legal resident of the United States
  • Your CDL permit number or your CDL

After that, you will be asked to provide a set of fingerprints to the TSA, and the FBI will use them to investigate you. This is a list of the crimes that will disqualify you from getting a hazmat endorsement, and they may also keep you from getting a CDL.

  • Murder
  • Fraud
  • Distribution of a controlled substance
  • Unlawful use of a firearm
  • Rape
  • Kidnapping
  • Treason
  • Smuggling
  • Immigration violations
  • Extortion

Keep in mind that this is only a partial list of offenses that can keep you from getting a hazmat endorsement, and a CDL. Contact the DMV or the TSA to get a full list.

Each state may also have other guidelines that are stricter than the federal standards. To get more information on this and other things you need to know to secure a Class A CDL, contact the DMV in the state that you live. You can also get information from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association, or your employer most likely has all of the information you need to get the endorsements you need to do your job.

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