In order to file a CDL application in the state of New York, you must first meet one of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Hold a Class D drivers license
  • Have a Class E drivers license
  • Have a non-CDL Class C license
  • Hold a commercial drivers license in another state

If you do not have any of the aforementioned requirements, you must take the following steps in order to get yourself a New York commercial driving license:

  1. Study the Commercial Driver’s Manual
  2. Go to the DMV office
  3. Take the written knowledge exam for the commercial learners permit, and bring the following with you:
  4. Practice driving with a supervisor in the passenger seat
  5. Take the road skills driving exam

Information Related to CDL

Classes of CDL

Because of the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act, each state has now divided the license to drive commercial vehicles into three categories:

  • Class A: allows drivers to operate vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more. However, the gross vehicle weight rating of the car being towed must be over 10,000 pounds.
  • Class B: allows drivers to operate any single vehicle with a gross weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more, but the car being towed must have a GVWR less than 10,000 pounds.
  • Class C: allows drivers to operate a single or combination vehicle that is not met by Class A or B. These can either transport 16 passengers or more or can be used to transport hazardous materials.

CDL Endorsements

Just as there are various classes of CDL licenses, there are also a number of endorsements that you can obtain with a commercial drivers license. The list is as follows:

  • H for hazardous materials
  • N for tanks
  • P for passengers
  • S for school buses
  • T for double or triple trailers

In addition, to answer the question of how to get a cdl license endorsement depends on the one in question. Numerous CDL endorsements have additional testing requirements, all of which are different. The breakdown is as follows:

  • Hazardous Materials: H Endorsement knowledge exam
  • Tank Vehicles: N Endorsement knowledge exam
  • Double/Triple Trailers: T Endorsement knowledge exam
  • Passenger: P Endorsement knowledge exam and road skills test
  • School buses: S Endorsement knowledge exam and road skills test

Intrastate vs. Interstate

Intrastate commerce is for commercial drivers who operate within the state, whereas interstate commerce is for CDL drivers who operate their vehicle from one state to another. By law, New York requires you to be at least 18 years of age for intrastate travel and at least 21 for interstate travel.
Keep in mind, there are certain actions that can cause disqualification of your commercial driving license. Committing one of the following crimes, for example, will result in a driver’s ineligibility to apply for a hazmat endorsement:

  • Murder
  • Sedition
  • Robbery
  • Arson
  • Immigration violations

CDL Tests

In order to obtain a commercial driving license in the state of New York, you will be required to pass both a written test, as well as a road skills exam. You can begin your application process at the age of 18, however, if you intend to operate in interstate travel, you must be at least 21 to apply.

CDL Driver Training and Drivers Ed

Once you decide what CDL license and endorsement you want to pursue, the New York DMV highly recommends that you enroll in an online CDL course. The truck driving schools that offer these classes will help you learn all of the important topics that you are sure to find on your general commercial vehicle exam and on your endorsement test. Furthermore, they provide you with an alternative to simply sitting and studying the New York Commercial Driver Manual. These CDL training courses will give you a more in-depth understanding of CDL subjects by presenting them in a manner that is easy to grasp.

CDL Practice Test and Study Guide

If you are not sure how to approach studying for the general CDL exam or your endorsement test, the best thing to do is follow this guide:

  1. Surround yourself with resources to study
  2. Organize them so that you can review one or two resources per day
  3. Review areas you are having trouble in

Furthermore, while the New York Commercial Driver Manual is a very important tool, it is not the only resource you should focus on. Employing a study guide and a CDL practice exam to supplement your handbook is wise. Each commercial drivers license practice test compiles questions from the depths of the handbook, and it presents the questions similarly to how they will appear on the actual exam. This allows you to practice and get comfortable with the test format long before the day arrives.

CDL Medical Certifications

In order to obtain a commercial driving license in NY, you must meet federal medical examination requirements. You will need to provide a USDOT Medical Examiner’s Certificate that certifies your type of commercial driving: Non-Excepted Interstate, Non-Excepted Intrastate, Excepted Intrastate or Excepted Interstate.

Suspension Periods

Depending on the violation in question, you will incur a certain suspension period. When it comes to a commercial drivers license suspension, you can expect to be without your CDL for one year if you commit any of the following:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol
  • Driving under the influence of a controlled substance
  • Driving with a BAC of .04 percent or more
  • Refusing to take a blood alcohol concentration test
  • Leaving an accident without reporting it

Furthermore, if you commit any of the aforementioned crimes while you have a hazardous materials endorsement, your suspension will last three years.

DUI Suspension

You will be charged with driving under the influence if you register a BAC of at least 0.04 percent if you are over the age of 21. Among other severe penalties you will face, your driving license will be suspended for three months.

How to Reinstate a Suspended CDL License

In order to reinstate suspended CDL licenses, you must go through the necessary steps required by the New York Department of Motor Vehicles:

  1. Wait out suspension period
  2. Pay off all traffic fines
  3. Take alcohol or drug awareness classes (if applicable)
  4. Pay suspension reinstatement fees

The fees for a reinstating suspended CDL license credentials can be paid in person at a local DMV office, or by mail if you send a check or money order that is payable to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles. The fees include:

  • Zero-tolerance violations: $100
  • Suspensions for a definite period of time: $50
  • Indefinite suspensions: $70
  • Drivers from out-of-state suspensions: $25

Background Check

If you are going to apply for a job as a CDL driver, you should be aware that your potential employer will most likely lookup background checks on you. Furthermore, you can expect to have a background investigation done on you in a number of circumstances, including:

  • If you are buying firearms.
  • If you are moving into an apartment building.
  • If you are applying for any kind of job.

If you want to expedite the acceptance process, for whatever the situation may be, you can obtain a background check on yourself in advance to provide comfort and inspire confidence in the other party in question.

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Last updated on Monday, July 23 2018.

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