The new Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse arrives in January, and employers will need to start getting their drivers’ consent to obtain certain Clearinghouse reports.
A new “Consent for Limited Queries” form — included with your subscription to the Transportation Regulatory Alert — can be used for that purpose.
The FMCSA, in 49 CFR §382.701, will require motor carriers to check the online Clearinghouse each year for each CDL driver they employ, to see if there’s a drug or alcohol violation on the driver’s record.
The Clearinghouse opens on January 6, 2020, so the first check (called a “query”) for all existing CDL drivers will have to be completed by January 6, 2021.
Full or limited
Employers will have the option to get a driver’s “full” report from the Clearinghouse or start with a “limited” query to see if a full report is necessary (a full report will be needed if the limited query shows that the Clearinghouse has information about the driver).
Both types of queries will carry the same $1.25 price tag, but the advantage of starting with a limited query is that the driver does not have to grant consent every time a limited query is run. Instead, drivers can sign a one-time authorization that lasts for the duration of employment.
That’s the purpose of the new form, available through the link below. Have each new or existing CDL driver sign the form and keep it in their drug testing file. The form must be retained until three years after the date of the last limited query that the form authorizes.
- If a full query is ever needed for a driver, the driver will need to register with the Clearinghouse, log in, and grant electronic consent. You cannot have drivers sign a paper form, or your own electronic form, to grant this type of consent.
- A full query is required for every new CDL driver you employ starting January 6, 2020. Limited queries are only an option for existing drivers for whom you need to run an annual query.
- Drivers are not required to sign a limited-query consent form that lasts for the duration of employment. The regulations allow them to grant consent for a shorter period of time. Do not use the new form below for a driver who wants to grant a more limited term of consent.
Click here to download the new form.
Need to educate your drivers about the Clearinghouse?
The FMCSA requires all motor carriers to inform their CDL drivers about the information that will be reported to the Clearinghouse, including any DOT drug or alcohol testing violations.
Drivers should also be informed about how they can register for the Clearinghouse and other steps they will be expected to take.
Do your CDL drivers know how the Clearinghouse will affect them? If not, download this notice and provide it to your drivers!
NOTE: J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc. grants permission to subscribers to reproduce the “Consent for Limited Queries” form and “Clearinghouse Notice” for internal use at one business location only, provided that J. J. Keller’s copyright notice remains visible on all copies.
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