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Driver Exemption Programs


The Federal Diabetes and Vision Exemption Programs have specific requirements, as well as requests for hearing and seizure exemptions.  These requests may include medical exams, employment history, driving experience and motor vehicle records which must be submitted with the application. The Agency will make a final decision within 180 days of receipt of the complete application.

Applying for an Exemption

An individual may apply for an exemption from the diabetes, hearing, seizure and vision standard, section 391.41(b)(3) and 391.41(b)(11), 391.41(b)(8) or 391(b)(10) of the regulation, by utilizing these programs. If you do not currently meet the diabetes, hearing, seizure and/or vision standard and are unable to obtain a medical card, you may be an eligible candidate.

Please note that all exemption programs are for drivers who intend to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. FMCSA does not have statutory authority to grant waivers/exemptions to drivers from states' intrastate requirements. Therefore, the FMCSA waivers/exemptions do not permit regulatory relief for drivers who plan to limit their operations to intrastate commerce.

Diabetes Package

This package has been removed due to the update of the Diabetes Standard. For more information please visit the New Diabetes Standard Overview Webinar.

Vision Package

Hearing Package

Seizure Package

Interstate Commerce

Interstate Commerce is trade, traffic, or transportation involving the crossing of a State boundary. Either the vehicle, its passengers, or cargo must cross a State boundary, or there must be the intent to cross a State boundary to be considered an interstate carrier. Intrastate commerce is trade, traffic, or transportation within a single State.

Interstate commerce is determined by the essential character of the movement, manifested by the shipper's fixed and persistent intent at the time of shipment, and is ascertained from all of the facts and circumstances surrounding the transportation. When the intent of the transportation being performed is interstate in nature, even when the route is within the boundaries of a single state, the driver and the CMV are subject to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

Please note that the exemption programs are for drivers of CMVs that intend to operate in interstate commerce in the United States. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations define the United States as the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2018
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