Our commercial driver’s license (CDL) lawyer often encounters questions about interstate regulations when handling these cases. Below, our CDL lawyer will dive deeper into key legal issues that Florida CDL holders should be aware of when they hit the road across state lines.
Understanding Interstate Commerce and Federal Regulations:
When it comes to commercial driving, there are both state and federal laws to follow. At the federal level, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) set the regulations for commercial driving. This includes hours of service, vehicle maintenance, and driver qualifications. However, when you drive across state borders, you must also comply with the specific laws of the states you enter. Read more about the commercial driving laws in FL on their state website.
License Reciprocity and Endorsements:
One of the common areas of concern for CDL holders is license reciprocity. Thankfully, CDLs are generally recognized across all states, meaning your Florida-issued CDL is valid in other states. However, this doesn’t mean that specific endorsements, such as HazMat or tanker endorsements, are automatically recognized everywhere. Our CDL lawyer wants to highlight how essential it is to verify that your endorsements are valid in the states you plan to operate in.
Traffic Violations and Points System:
Traffic violations can become complicated when you’re out of your home state. Be aware that out-of-state traffic violations can still affect your CDL in Florida. Most states share information about traffic violations through the Driver License Compact, meaning that offenses committed elsewhere can lead to points on your Florida driving record, potentially impacting your CDL status. Read more about CDL Traffic Violations in our recent blog!
DUI and Drug Testing Laws:
One area where no compromise is made is DUI and drug offenses. CDL holders are held to higher standards due to the frequency of trips they have to make. A DUI in any state can lead to suspension or revocation of your CDL. The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for CDL drivers is typically lower than regular drivers, often set at 0.04%. For CDL drivers, these regulations apply no matter which state they’re in.
Insurance and Liability Considerations:
Liability and insurance requirements can also differ from state to state. There are minimum insurance coverage standards for commercial vehicles set by federal law. But, note that some states may have additional requirements. It’s important to know your insurance coverage is set up properly for each state you will do business in to avoid any legal complications.
Our CDL Lawyer is Here For You
Navigating the legal landscape of interstate commercial driving requires diligence and a proactive approach. As CDL holders, staying informed about the varying laws and regulations of each state you travel through is part of your responsibility. If you find yourself facing legal challenges or have questions about specific interstate regulations, contact our CDL lawyer today.
Remember, safety and compliance are key to maintaining a clean driving record and a successful career in commercial driving. Safe travels!