FMCSA - Federal Motor Carrier Safety Adminstration

Coming Soon

Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse

The Clearinghouse will improve highway safety by helping employers, FMCSA, State Driver Licensing Agencies, and State law enforcement to quickly and efficiently identify drivers who are not legally permitted to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) due to drug and alcohol program violations. This secure online database will provide access to real-time information, ensuring that drivers committing these violations complete the necessary steps before getting back behind the wheel, or performing any other safety-sensitive function.

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The Clearinghouse Timeline

  • December 5, 2016

    Clearinghouse Final Rule Published

    The Clearinghouse final rule implemented the Congressional mandate to establish a drug and alcohol clearinghouse and identified the roles and responsibilities of those who will be required to use the Clearinghouse.

  • Fall 2019

    Registration Begins

    Users can establish an account that will allow access to the Clearinghouse once it becomes operational on January 6, 2020.

  • January 6, 2020

    Clearinghouse Implementation

    Mandatory use of the Clearinghouse goes into effect. Employers must report drug and alcohol violations and conduct electronic queries in the Clearinghouse. Manual inquiries with previous employers are required to cover the preceding three years.

  • January 6, 2023

    Clearinghouse Three-Year Mark

    Employers must query the Clearinghouse to satisfy the employer requirement to identify prospective drivers who have committed drug and alcohol program violations.

  1. December 5, 2016: Clearinghouse Final Rule Published

    The Clearinghouse final rule implemented the Congressional mandate to establish a drug and alcohol clearinghouse and identified the roles and responsibilities of those who will be required to use the Clearinghouse.

  2. Fall 2019: Registration Begins

    Users can establish an account that will allow access to the Clearinghouse once it becomes operational on January 6, 2020.

  3. January 6, 2020: Clearinghouse Implementation Date

    Mandatory use of the Clearinghouse to report and query information about driver drug and alcohol program violations goes into effect. Employers must conduct both electronic queries within the Clearinghouse and manual inquiries with previous employers to cover the preceding three years.

  4. January 6, 2023: Clearinghouse Three-Year Mark

    Employers must query the Clearinghouse to satisfy the employer requirement to identify prospective drivers who have committed drug and alcohol program violations.

Resources

FMCSA has developed a number of useful resources to prepare CDL drivers, employers, and other authorized users for their roles once the Clearinghouse becomes operational. We will continue to develop materials as we get closer to the Clearinghouse Implementation Date, sign up to receive email updates as these resources are released.

Resources

Useful Links

Frequently Asked Questions

About the Clearinghouse

Records of violations of drug and alcohol prohibitions in 49 CFR part 382, subpart B, including positive drug or alcohol test results and test refusals. When a driver with a drug and alcohol program violation completes the required return-to-duty (RTD) process, this information will also be recorded in the Clearinghouse.

No. The Clearinghouse will contain only violations that occurred on or after the rule’s compliance date of January 6, 2020. If a driver is currently in the return-to-duty process at the time of the Clearinghouse launch, the underlying violation and any related activity will not be entered into the Clearinghouse.

No. Only results of DOT drug or alcohol tests or refusals may be reported to the Clearinghouse. While employers may conduct drug and alcohol testing that is outside the scope of the DOT testing requirements, positive test results or refusals for such non-DOT testing may not be reported to the Clearinghouse.

No. The Clearinghouse will contain only drug and alcohol program violation information for employees subject to the testing requirements under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations in 49 CFR part 382. Employers must continue to request information from previous employers if the employee was subject to DOT drug and alcohol testing required by a DOT modal administration other than FMCSA (as required by § 391.23(e)(4)(B)).

No, this rule does not change any existing requirements in the US DOT-wide procedures for transportation workplace drug and alcohol testing.

Users and User Roles

To access the Clearinghouse once it is operational, a user will be required to request access from FMCSA by registering for the Clearinghouse. Authorized users will include:

  • Drivers who are commercial driver’s license (CDL) and commercial learner’s permit (CLP) holders
  • Employers (this includes motor carriers and other employers with drivers operating CMVs that require a CDL or CLP)
  • Consortia/Third-Party Administrators (C/TPAs)
  • Medical Review Officers (MROs)
  • Substance Abuse Professionals (SAPs)
  • State Driver Licensing Agencies (SDLAs)
  • Federal Enforcement personnel
  • Drivers will need to log into the Clearinghouse to electronically consent to requests from prospective and current employers needing to access full details about any drug and alcohol program violations in a driver’s history, as part of employment-related background checks. This is the only valid method for responding to this type of employer consent request, and failure to provide consent will result in a driver being prohibited from performing safety-sensitive functions for that employer.
  • Drivers will be able to log in at any time to view their individual driver record.
  • If choosing to engage a Substance Abuse Professional (SAP), a driver must identify the SAP in the Clearinghouse to initiate the RTD process.

To complete the actions outlined above, drivers will be required to register with the Clearinghouse. Sign up to receive an email notification once registration is open.

Yes, all Mexican or Canadian employers, employees, or service agents that are required to comply with FMCSA’s drug and alcohol testing requirements must comply with the Clearinghouse final rule.

No, Clearinghouse registration is not a required step for drivers. If a driver is never required to consent to a pre-employment or other full query, and never incurs a drug or alcohol violation, then the driver will not need to register for the Clearinghouse.

However, a driver will need to be registered to provide consent in the Clearinghouse for a prospective or current employer to conduct a full query of his or her driver record. A full query ensures that the driver is not prohibited from operating a CMV due to a drug or alcohol violation. Beginning January 6, 2020, a full query will be a required step during any pre-employment screening for a CDL driver required to perform safety-sensitive functions (including operating a CMV). Early registration will allow drivers to respond quickly to a query request, helping the hiring process go more smoothly.

The Clearinghouse offers employers a centralized location to report drug and alcohol program violations and check that no current or prospective employee is prohibited from performing safety-sensitive functions, such as operating a CMV, due to an unresolved drug and alcohol program violation—that is, a violation for which the employee has not completed the RTD process. This check, or query, must be conducted as part of any pre-employment screening, and at least annually for current employees.

Employers can also use the Clearinghouse to designate a Consortium/Third-Party Administrator (C/TPA); this is a required step for an owner-operator (an employer that employs himself or herself as a driver).

To complete the actions outlined above, employers and C/TPAs will be required to register with the Clearinghouse. Sign up to receive an email notification once registration is open.

An employer who employs himself/herself as a driver is subject to the requirements pertaining to employers as well as those pertaining to drivers. Under the Clearinghouse final rule, an employer who employs himself/herself as a driver must designate a Consortium/Third-Party Administrator (C/TPA) to comply with the employer’s Clearinghouse reporting requirements related to his or her own alcohol and controlled substance use (§ 382.705(b)(6)).

Medical Review Officers (MROs) and Substance Abuse Professionals (SAPs) must use the Clearinghouse to report required information about drivers.

MROs must report verified positive drug test results, or if a driver refuses to take a drug test.

SAPs must report on the RTD status of drivers working to resolve any open drug and alcohol program violations. This information includes the date of completion of the initial assessment and the date the driver becomes eligible for RTD testing.

Registration will be required to complete these actions. Sign up to receive an email notification once registration is open.

As of January 6, 2020, State Driver Licensing Agencies (SDLAs) will be able to query the Clearinghouse prior to completing licensing transactions.

Registration will be required to complete this action. Sign up to receive an email notification once registration is open.

Keeping Driver Data Secure

  • The Clearinghouse will meet all relevant Federal security standards and FMCSA will verify the effectiveness of the security protections on a regular basis.
  • Driver information will not be available to the public; only authorized users will be able to register and access the Clearinghouse for designated purposes. The Clearinghouse will require authentication (username/password) to access records.
  • Drivers registered in the Clearinghouse will be able to access their Clearinghouse records at any time, and at no cost to them. Drivers will only be able to access their own information, not information about other drivers.
  • FMCSA will only share detailed drug and alcohol violation information with prospective or current employers when an employer has requested and received specific consent from the driver. Drivers will be able to see the information that would be released to an employer before consenting to the release.
  • Driver information will only be shared with FMCSA and other enforcement agencies as required to enforce drug and alcohol use testing regulations.

The current paper versions of the CCF and ATF specifically permit the use of either the driver’s social security number or employee identification number. However, under § 382.705 , the driver’s CDL number and the state of issuance must be used in place of the social security number or employee identification number when completing the Federal CCF or ATF.

FMCSA will notify a driver using the method indicated during the driver’s Clearinghouse registration—either mail or email—any time information about the driver is added, revised, or removed. If the driver has not yet registered for the Clearinghouse, these notifications will be sent by mail using the address listed on the driver’s CDL.

Need more information about the Clearinghouse?

If you did not find the answer to your question above, you can contact FMCSA at clearinghouse@dot.gov