Massachusetts RMV CDL laws

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by Joshua on March 12, 2014
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Commercial Driver’s license (CDL) is the license for driving any commercial vehicles. For driving any specific commercial vehicle such as school bus or truck or Hazardous substance carrying vehicles, one must request for the particular endorsement. Such vehicles will need to display placards before they transport any volatile substances. Massachusetts DMV has changed the RMV CDL Driving rules this year. You can get more details by looking into their website “here”: http://www.dmv.org/DMV/ma-massachusetts/

Self Certification

Effective this January, 2014, all CDL drivers commercially need to inform what type of commerce they are going to operate in the interstate or intrastate. They also need to submit the medical certificate to the RMV. This process is called the self certification where the driver needs to determine which self certification category the driver belongs to based on the driving information he/she has submitted. The driver will have to provide a copy of the DOT medical report to the RMV. Failure to self-certify or submit the medical certificate documents might lead to downgrading of your CDL to Class D automatically and an amendment fee of $25 is attached to your license.

You can research here in order to get to the CDL Self certification form.

More about the Process

Commercial vehicle drivers are free to complete their CDL self certification with RMV any time. You will be required to certify the RMV in case you need to obtain, renew, transfer from one state to another or upgrade the CDL license . In case you are doing this after January 2014, then you will have to visit the RMV office personally and submit all the necessary documentation. In case your medical examination certificate has just eye examination, diabetes or skills performance results conducted by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA), you will have to furnish these records to the RMV personally.

You might be wondering whether people who have the CDL currently still need to certify. The answer is a big “Yes” because the DMV Massachusetts rules have changed this year. You will have to self-certify based on the current law requirements. If you do not wish to certify or give medical examination, then you have no other option other than downgrading your CDL to Class D. In case you are one of the Class A, B or C Learner’s permit holder, then the permit will be deleted after re-certified. Later you will have to reapply for the CDL permit.

Medical Certificate Requirements

The medical certificate is granted for a particular period which should have an expiration date up to 90 days. The medical certificate comes with 6 conditions which should be selected by the examiner. Option 3 is associated with the waiver or exemption to the medical examination. Term waiver used at times which refers to the Federal exemption and not the state issued interstate medical waiver. You can either mail or fax or submit all the necessary documents in person to the RMV.

Types of Self Certification Categories

As a CDL driver, you might fall into one of these self certification categories depending upon whether you want to operate interstate or intrastate commerce or whether or not you can have the medical certificate or not.

  • Non excepted interstate (NI) – this category states that you can operate in the interstate commerce and meet all the Federal qualifications. You are also ready to obtain a medical certificate in this case.
  • Excepted interstate (EI) – Here the driver is able to operate in interstate commerce. However, you can engage in operations and transportation that get excepted from all Federal qualifications. Therefore, you are not required to get a medical certificate in this case.
  • Non excepted intrastate (NA) – You can operate in the intrastate commerce and will be subjected to State driver qualifications.
  • Excepted intrastate (EA) – Here you can operate in the intrastate commerce and engage in transportation excepted from all parts of the State driver qualifications. Hence you will not be required to get the medical certificate in this case.

Based on your age, current license restrictions or any other conditionals endorsed on your CDL driver’s license, you can be limited in the category you are trying to select out of the above 4 listed. You also have the option of getting medical examination exempt depending upon which of the 4 categories you will select.

EI and EA drivers need to apply for the re-certification every 5 years. NI and NA drivers need to self certify once in 2 years as their self certification is associated with an expiration date.

If you are not sure when to go for re-certification, you will receive a reminder when your self-certification is going to expire. Make sure you get it re-certified before 60 days of expiry. DMV will send a notice to your address on file about the reminder. If you still do not execute it, your license will be downgraded.

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