Important Changes Coming to FMCSA Clearinghouse in 2023

Are you prepared?

Required background investigations before hiring a CDL driver are a necessary step in satisfying the requirements established by 49 CFR 391.23(e) for employers of CDL drivers.

This process determines if the driver has violated the drug and alcohol regulations of any Department of Transportation (DOT) mode within the past three years. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently released an announcement stating that:

“Beginning January 6th, 2023, “when three years of violation data is stored in the clearinghouse, prospective employers must not conduct manual inquiries.  In accordance with §§ 382.413(b) and 391.23(e)(4), beginning January 6, 2023prospective employers must conduct a pre-employment query of the Clearinghouse, as set forth in § 382.701(a), to comply with the inquiry requirement in § 391.23(e) as it pertains to FMCSA-regulated employers.

NOTE: The Clearinghouse contains only information about drivers employed by FMCSA-regulated employers. If a prospective employee was employed by an employer regulated by a DOT agency other than FMCSA (such as the Federal Railroad Administration, Federal Transit Administration, Federal Aviation Administration, etc.) during the three-year time frame, prospective employers will still be required to directly request drug and alcohol violation information from those DOT-regulated employers in accordance with 391.23(e)(4)(ii), since this information is not reported to the Clearinghouse.

However, the FMSCA has made it clear that annual query requirements have NOT changed. Employers of CDL drivers must still conduct a query in the Clearinghouse at least once a year for each CDL driver they employ. This annual query requirement applies on a rolling 12-month basis, which means that if you conducted your last annual queries in December 2021, it is time to conduct the next round of annual queries.

Employers must obtain general consent from CDL drivers they employ before conducting limited queries in the Clearinghouse to view these drivers’ information (you can download a sample limited query consent form).

How On Demand can help:

Since the start of the FMCSA Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse, On Demand has provided consortia/ third-party administrator services for managing Clearinghouse requirements to employers of CDL drivers. Our staff ensures compliance with FMCSA regulations for your organization, so you have one less task to worry about.

Contact us today for comprehensive Clearinghouse management solutions for your organization. 330-270-3660