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Commercial Drivers License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Download a PDF version of all Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse FAQs here.


  1. What is the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse (Clearinghouse)?
  2. Will violations that occur before the Clearinghouse rule is implemented be included in the Clearinghouse?
  3. Does the final rule change any of the existing drug and alcohol program requirements in part 40?
  4. Are the employers of non-CDL drivers who operate CMVs subject to the Clearinghouse query or reporting requirements for these drivers?
  5. Who will have access to the driver’s information in the Clearinghouse?
  6. How will FMCSA protect a driver’s personal information?
  7. Can a driver correct information in the Clearinghouse?
  8. Is the Clearinghouse subject to the Privacy Act requirements?
  9. What happens if an employer submits false information to the Clearinghouse?
  10. May drivers access their own information in the Clearinghouse?
  11. Who will be able to see driver information in the Clearinghouse?
  12. How will drivers be notified when information about them is added to the Clearinghouse?
  13. How long will driver violation records be available in the Clearinghouse? 
  14. Are Social Security numbers (SSNs) required to enter driver violations?
  15. Are Canadian and Mexican drivers conducting operations in the United States subject to the Clearinghouse requirements?
  16. Will any information from the Clearinghouse appear in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s National Driver Register?
  17. How does the Clearinghouse impact motor carrier employers?
  18. What information must employers report to the Clearinghouse?
  19. How much time does an employer have to submit a report of an employee’s drug or alcohol program violation to the Clearinghouse?
  20. When must current and prospective employers conduct a query of a driver’s information in the Clearinghouse? 
  21. What is the difference between a full and limited query?
  22. What if a limited query show there is information on a driver?
  23. How much will it cost to conduct pre-employment and annual queries in the Clearinghouse?
  24. May employers authorize service agents to conduct queries to the Clearinghouse on their behalf?
  25. What must employers do when an authorized service agent is no longer conducting business for the employer’s company?
  26. Once the Clearinghouse is implemented, will prospective employers still need to conduct drug and alcohol three-year background checks with previous employers?
  27. Will a prospective employee’s drug and alcohol violation history with DOT modes other than FMCSA be available in the Clearinghouse?
  28. May employers report the results of non-DOT drug or alcohol tests to the Clearinghouse?
  29. How do owner-operators meet their Clearinghouse obligations?
  30. Does an owner-operator have to conduct queries on himself/herself?
  31. If a driver has a drug or alcohol violation in one state and then applies for a CDL in another state, will the Clearinghouse, be able to connect that driver’s drug and alcohol violation history to the new CDL?
  32. Will a driver’s follow-up testing plan, implemented as part of the return-to duty process, be available in the Clearinghouse?
  33. What are a medical review officer’s (MRO) responsibilities for reporting information to the Clearinghouse?
  34. If an MRO changes a verified drug test result per 49 CFR Part 40, how long does the MRO have to submit the change to the Clearinghouse?
  35. What donor ID should be documented on the chain of custody form (CCF) and the Alcohol testing form (ATF)?
  36. What information is a substance abuse professional (SAP) required to report to the Clearinghouse?
Updated: Tuesday, December 6, 2016
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