Is it time to renew a commercial drivers license? If it has been about four years since you applied for your commercial drivers license, you might soon receive a Connecticut renewal reminder in the mail. There are several steps to renewing your CDL, and many of them must be completed before you ever step foot into the DMV.

To complete a CDL license renewal, you will have to refresh your medical certification, retake any knowledge tests required for your endorsement and self-certify your license in the Connecticut DMV registry. In some cases, such as a hazmat renewal, extra steps are required and the locations at which you can renew are limited. Based on a federal law passed in 2016, you will also have to provide additional documentation in order to maintain your CDL. These papers include your medical certificate, proof of your identity and proof of your residence in Connecticut.

When to Renew Your CDL License in Connecticut

Your Connecticut CDL must be renewed every 4 years on your birthday. The Connecticut DMV does not issue new licenses on the day of the renewal, so it is advised that you apply at least one week in advance in order to give your new license time to arrive in the mail.

The DMV in Connecticut will send renewal reminders to the address it currently has listed in your file. If your address has changed, notify the DMV. The renewal reminder will contain the instructions on how to complete your CDL renewal and whether you are required to take any additional tests.

CDL Renewal Testing Requirements in Connecticut

You will not be required to retake a CDL skills test in order to renew a CDL in Connecticut, provided that your CDL has not been expired for more than 2 years. However, you may be required to retake knowledge tests to maintain your endorsements. The renewal reminder you receive in the mail should list any tests that you will be required to take.

Even though you are a practiced professional driver, it is still wise to study for any written CDL tests. Federal and state laws do change, and the material on the test may not be the same as the first time you took it. However, the DMV does allow three chances to pass the required tests.

Additionally, the general knowledge test is taken by all applicants while other tests, such as the passenger transport test, is only required for specific license classes.

If your license has a hazmat endorsement, you will be required to retake the test each time you renew your CDL license. The written tests must be taken at the DMV, and you must bring all of the required documentation listed below before the test will be administered.

What do you need to renew your CDL license in Connecticut?

To meet CDL renewal requirements, you must supply documents to prove identity, medical fitness and residence. If you have changed your name in the last 4 years, you will need to bring your current CDL, a legal document with your former name and the official name change document to establish your new legal name.

Bring the following documents to the DMV:

  • One primary proof of identity: U.S. Birth Certificate, U.S. Passport, Foreign passport with supporting documents, U.S. certificate of Citizenship, U.S. Certificate of Naturalization or a Permanent Resident Card.
  • One additional secondary proof of identity: Photo driver’s license, Connecticut non-driver ID card, U.S. Military ID or discharge papers, Marriage or Civil Union certificate, pilot’s license, baptismal certificate, Social Security card, Employment Authorization Card, Veterans Health card or a federally-recognized tribal member ID Card.
  • Proof of residence in Connecticut: Utility bill, mortgage bill, bank statement, pre-printed pay stub, Medicaid or Medicare benefit statement, current homeowner’s or renter’s policy, current Connecticut motor registration, current motor vehicle loan statement, lease or mortgage agreement, Connecticut voter registration card or an official school record showing enrollment.
  • Proof of medical certification: A valid, unexpired medical certificate completed by a licensed medical professional.
  • Proof of social security number: Social Security card, a recent W-2 or a 1099 from the past five years.
  • Proof of legal presence in the United States: U.S. Birth Certificate, U.S. Certificate of Citizenship, U.S. Certificate of Naturalization, Permanent Resident card, valid Employment Authorization card or a Refugee travel document.

CDL Renewal Process in Connecticut

To complete your CDL renewal, you must visit a DMV location in person. This is because you will be required to present your documentation, take written tests and update the photo on your license. However, there are several steps you should take to renew your license before you visit the CDL facility.

Step One: Complete Your Medical Certification

Before you attempt to renew your CDL, you must renew your CDL medical certification. The Medical Examiner Certificate, MCSA-5876 must be completed by a licensed medical professional recognized by the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.

You can find a certified examiner near you by visiting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website and browsing the registry for doctors in your area. The doctor must complete form MCSA-5876; the DMV will no longer accept forms R323 or B328.

Once your medical certification is complete, you can submit the form to the DMV one of two ways. You may fax the form to (860) 263-5568 or email it to DMV.CDL@CT.GOV. The DMV will then contact you if any of your information is illegible, incorrect or missing. You will be asked to renew and refax the medical verifications, because the DMV must have this document on file to renew your CDL.

Step Two: Self-Certify Your CDL or CLP

Before you apply for a CDL, you must self-certify your vehicle and license. The online self-certification form requires your license or permit number, full name, driving type, date of birth, email address and online signature.

Submit your self-certification, and you will receive a confirmation from the DMV. Keep this confirmation email in your records, because you will need it to renew a CDL, change your driving type, upgrade your CDL, apply for a new CDL or make a CDL transfer to another state.

Step Three: Visit the CDL Office

In the final step, visit a DMV CDL renewal location in person to provide your proof of identity and residence. Bring all the required documents, your current CDL and the email confirmation of your self-certification. Save time by scheduling an appointment in advance or be prepared for the DMV wait times.

Allow a few hours if you will be required to take any tests, and note that you will not receive your new CDL the day you go to the DMV. You will be given your expiring license and a temporary paper card until the renewed CDL license arrives in the mail. The DMV recommends completing your application process at least a week before your cdl expiration date to allow for shipping time.

Connecticut CDL Permit Renewal Requirements

A Connecticut CDL permit is valid for 180 days, but may be renewed a single time within a 2 year period. To complete a CDL permit renewal for an additional 180 days, you must bring your current commercial learners permit to the DMV within the allowed time period. There will be no additional knowledge test unless you attempt to renew your permit after the expiration. A CLP renewal costs $10.

Unlike CDLs, the CLD permit expiration date is not set for your birthday but for the day the permit was issued. While the permit itself is only valid for 6 months, you could return to the DMV to renew it as much as a full year after the permit has lapsed if it has not been a full 2 years since it was first issued.

However, you only have a 2 year period to get your CDL or you will be asked to retake both the knowledge test and the skills test needed to qualify for a license.

Hazardous Material Endorsement CDL Renewal Requirements in Connecticut

To complete a hazmat renewal in the state of Connecticut, you must reapply for a license and satisfy the CDL renewal requirements listed above. You must also complete a hazmat test and restore your TSA background check.

Once you have reapplied for your CDL, contact the TSA to restore your hazmat certification. It is best to do this well in advance of your license’s expiration date because of how long it takes the TSA to process.

Hazmat endorsements can only be renewed at DMV hub locations. Walk-in CDL testing is available at the eight hub locations in the state:

Bridgeport DMV

95 Sylvan Avenue,

Bridgeport, CT, 06606

Danbury DMV

2 Lee Mac Avenue,

Danbury, CT, 06810

Hamden DMV

1985 State Street

Hamden, CT 06517

Norwalk DMV

540 Main Avenue

Norwalk, CT 06851

Old Saybrook DMV

7 Custom Drive

Old Saybrook, CT, 06475

Waterbury DMV

2210 Thomaston Avenue

Waterbury, CT 06704

Wethersfield DMV

60 State Street

Wethersfield, CT 06161

Willimantic DMV

1557 West Main Street

Willimantic, CT 06226

The hours at the Connecticut DMV locations are 7:45 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. On Thursday, the hours are 9:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and the locations are open from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Walk-in testing for current CDL holders is available on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. It is available on Friday from 9:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Saturday from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

CDL Renewal Fees in Connecticut

The CDL renewal price in Connecticut is $70 for a standard CDL and $118 for a CDL with a passenger endorsement. The fee is also $118 if your license has a vehicle restriction. There is an additional $25 fee if you renew your CDL after it has passed its expiration date. Additionally, a general knowledge test will cost you $16, and each endorsement test will charge $5.

If you visit one of the DMV hub locations listed above, you may pay your fees with a debit or credit card, cash, money order, bank order or personal check. All checks should be made out to the Connecticut DMV. However, if you visit a photo license center or limited service DMV location, they may accept different forms of payment or charge a convenience fee of $8 for DMV services.

Last updated on Thursday, March 5 2020.