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New commercial driver laws take effect

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In accordance with federal law, effective on May 10, 2017, a new law went into effect where the California Department of Motor Vehicles requires all new and existing commercial driver license applicants to provide the DMV with proof of U.S. citizenship or permanent U.S. residency and proof of residency in California.

This comes on the heels of the state legislature requiring all first-time driver license or identification card applicants to present proof of California residence in addition to meeting all other license and identification card requirements.

Acceptable U.S. resident documents

Applicants will need to provide one of the following original documents:

  • Valid/unexpired U.S. Passport or U.S. Passport Card
  • Certified copy of a U.S. Birth Certificate issued by a city, county or another statistical office, or:
  • Certified copy of a Birth Certificate issued from the U.S. Territories of American Samoa, District of Columbia, Swain’s Island, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, or the Northern Mariana Islands
  • S. Certificate of Birth Abroad or Consular Report of Birth Abroad of a U.S. Citizen
  • Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of U.S. Citizenship
  • Valid/unexpired Permanent Resident Card
  • Valid/unexpired Employment Authorization Document (EAD)
  • Valid/unexpired foreign passport with an approved Record of Arrival/Departure
Acceptable California “proof of residency” documents

Applicants must also submit a rental or lease agreement, mortgage bill, utility bills, tax return or other identifying documents.

Keeping your commercial driver’s license

It’s one thing to get your commercial driver’s license and drive for a living, but it can be a challenge to keep it if you incur traffic violations. For example, speeding in excess of 15 mph over the posted limit is considered a criminal misdemeanor and could result in a 90-day suspension of your license, effectively putting you out of business for that time. If you get a ticket like this or any other commercial ticket, it’s imperative that you consult a commercial driver traffic attorney as soon as possible. You’ve worked hard to get your license, going through extra requirements as noted above, and with your livelihood on the line, you can’t afford to take any chances. A commercial ticket attorney who knows the system will help you fight any traffic violations to get them dismissed and the points associated with the ticket reduced or removed.

The Law Office of David Leicht serves the California communities of Barstow, Victorville, Apple Valley, Hesperia, Adelanto, Baker, Needles, Lucerne Valley, Big Bear, San Bernardino, Mojave, Phelan, and Wrightwood. For a free consultation, call (760) 256-3104.