Motor carriers and owner-operators under their own authority are running out of time to register with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse.

The deadline to register with the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse is January 5, 2021. The FMCSA says that those who fail to meet this deadline could face a fine.

According to the FMCSA’s website, “An owner-operator (an employer who employs himself or herself as a CDL driver, typically a single-driver operation) 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 or herself as a CDL driver must designate a consortium/third-party administrator (C/TPA) to comply with the employer’s Clearinghouse reporting requirements.”

The FMCSA’s Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse Final rule went into effect January 6, 2020, requiring motor carriers to query the online database before hiring a driver and once per year for existing drivers. The rule is meant to give employers and law enforcement real-time access to a driver’s drug and alcohol violation records (including positive substance use tests and test refusals), and the FMCSA, CMV employers, State Driver Licensing Agencies, and law enforcement officials all have complete access to information in the Clearinghouse.

While it is free for drivers to register with the Clearinghouse, CDL employers must purchase a Query plan from the FMCSA to utilize the database.

If you still need to register with the Clearinghouse, you can click here to begin the process online.

To learn more about the Drug & Alcohol Clearinghouse, please click here.

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