A statewide crackdown on drivers who failed to comply with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s guidelines for self certification led to repercussions for thousands of Florida drivers on March 31st of this year. For Florida drivers who are unfamiliar with the self certification procedures in the state, referring to section 322.01 (15) or taking a short trip to your local driver’s licensing office could mean the difference between a disqualification and a newfound freedom to drive based on the statewide reinforcement of the regulation.
Definition of Temporary Disqualification
A temporary disqualification is the revoking of a CDL for a specific period of time. In contrast, some drivers can have their CDL ultimately revoked for the entirety of their lifetime. The permanent disqualification of a driver’s license can occur if a driver is convicted of two or more violations between the time periods of December 31, 1989 and present day. A temporary disqualification, commonly referred to as a suspension, often results when a driver is convicted of one or more of the following:
- Leaving an Accident Scene
- Using a Motor Vehicle During the Act of Committing a Felony
- Refusal of BAC Testing
- Reckless Driving
- Committing Vehicular Manslaughter
Reinstating and Surrendering Your Driver’s License
If a commercial driver’s license has been temporarily disqualified, the driver is required to visit their local driver’s licensing office and surrender their license, accepting a temporary downgrade to a Class E license. Drivers with a Class E license are permitted to operate only non-commercial vehicles. Once the disqualification period has expired, drivers who wish to operate commercial vehicles must revisit their local licensing office and pay a fee to have their CDL privileges reinstated. Failure to do so could mean having these privileges temporarily revoked again.
In some cases, Florida drivers could receive a medical certification disqualification which would need to be addressed by submitting applicable documents or temporarily downgrading to a Class E license as well. During the license reinstatement process, all applicants should be prepared to provide up to date information regarding current address and identification in order to comply with Florida’s regulations.
If your CDL was temporarily disqualified in the state of Florida, adhering to the court mandated reinstatement process is definitely in your best interest. Florida law enforcement is focusing in on the state’s disqualified drivers and applying harsh punishments that could be avoided altogether by taking a trip to your local licensing center. While there may be fees associated with license reinstatement, the price you could pay for failure to comply could wind up costing you much more in the long run. With thousands of disqualified drivers already facing further suspension, climbing behind the wheel without being certain of the condition of your license could mean adding your name to the list.