How Does The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Define “Disqualification” And What Are Some Examples Of Ways To Be Disqualified?
Disqualification means: (1) the suspension, revocation, or cancellation of a commercial learner’s permit (CLP) or commercial driver’s license (CDL); (2) the withdrawal of a person’s privileges to drive a commercial motor vehicle (CMV); or (3) a determination by the FMCSA that a person is not qualified to operate a CMV under the FMCSR’s. An employer must not knowingly allow, require, permit, or authorize a driver who is disqualified to drive a CMV. In most cases, a driver must be convicted of an offense before he or she can be disqualified. Conviction is generally defined as: being judged guilty; determination that the driver has failed to comply with law; plea of guilty; forfeiting bail or collateral; payment of a fine or court cost; or violation of a condition of release without bail. The FMCSA takes into consideration how many convictions a driver has had when determining length of disqualification. These disqualifications can be as short as “no less than 60 days” or as long as “life.”
The following are a few examples of ways to be disqualified. A driver’s first conviction of being under the influence of alcohol disqualifies the driver for one year. A driver’s third conviction of following the vehicle ahead too closely disqualifies the driver for 120 days. A driver’s second conviction of leaving the scene of an accident disqualifies the driver for life. A driver’s second conviction of speeding excessively, involving any speed of 15 mph or more disqualifies the driver for 60 days. A driver’s second conviction of driving a CMV without obtaining a CLP or CDL disqualifies the driver for 60 days.