Maryland CDL Requirements

Maryland CDL Classes

      You must be at least 18 years old to operate a commercial motor vehicle within the state of Maryland (intrastate) and at least 21 years of age to drive a commercial motor vehicle across Maryland state lines (interstate). You must also be at least 21 years old to transport materials that are deemed hazardous and require a placard. You need a Maryland CDL in order to operate either commercial or non-commercial motor vehicles that fall into the following categories:

Class A
      Any combination of vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 pounds or more, provided that the gross vehicle weight rating of the towed vehicle is in excess of 10,000 pounds.  

Class B
      Any single vehicle with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 or more pounds, as well as any vehicle towing another vehicle that does not exceed a weight of 10,000 pounds. 

Class C
      Any vehicle or combination of vehicles that does not meet the criteria of either Class A or Class B, but is designed to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver), or is used in transporting materials classified as hazardous in the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act. Each applicant must also have a passenger or hazardous materials endorsement in order to obtain a Class C commercial driver’s license. 

Applying for a Maryland Commercial Learner’s Permit

      You must already possess a Maryland commercial learner’s permit (CLP) before you can take the CDL Skills Test. Before applying for a Maryland commercial learner’s permit, you must already possess a valid Maryland non-commercial Class C or higher driver’s license. You will be issued a Maryland commercial driver’s license (CDL) when you pass both the written general knowledge test and the CDL Skills Test. 

      In order to obtain a Maryland commercial learner’s permit, you must:

  • Visit any full-service Motor Vehicle Administration branch office
  • Be at least 18 years old for intrastate driving (within Maryland state lines).
  • Be at least 21 years of age for interstate driving (outside Maryland state lines).
  • Possess a valid non-commercial Maryland Class C or higher driver’s license.
  • Provide proof of your age (i.e., your Maryland driver’s license or certified birth certificate)
  • Provide your Social Security number (you do not need to provide your Social Security card).
  • Pass the CDL general knowledge written test. 
  • Pay the $90 fee for the commercial learner’s permit (includes the CDLIS & CDL Skills Test fees).

      If you have questions about which documents to bring to your local Motor Vehicle Administration branch office when you apply for your commercial learner’s permit, you may call the Maryland MVA Customer Service Center at (410) 768-7000 and speak to a customer service representative. You can email any questions you may have to the MVA Customer Service Center at MVACS@mdot.state.md.us

The CDL Written Tests

      All commercial driver’s license applicants must pass the general knowledge written test in order to be eligible to receive a CDL. The tests are administered on a computer. The test may be either a written test or an oral test (oral tests require an appointment). All written and computer tests are given in English only and foreign language interpreters are prohibited from assisting applicants who are taking the CDL Class A or B knowledge test. 

      In order to receive a passing score, each applicant is required to answer at least 80% of the questions correctly. All written tests require a score of at least 80% to pass. Any applicant who fails a commercial knowledge test for the first time may retest the next business day. Any applicant who fails any commercial knowledge test a second or third time must wait at least seven calendar days before they are eligible to take the test again. There is no fee to take the written tests.  

      Be sure to download and study the Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual and the Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual Amendment Insert as they contain important information that will help you pass the CDL knowledge tests. If you plan on taking the school bus knowledge test, be sure to download and study the Maryland Commercial Driver License School Bus Manual.

      Our Free CDL Practice Tests will help prepare you for the actual CDL knowledge tests administered by the DMV.

      Once you pass all the required written tests and pay the $90 fee to cover the cost of the commercial learner’s permit, you may only drive a commercial motor vehicle requiring a CDL under the following conditions:

  • You may not use any mobile communication device except to make an emergency 911 call.
  • You must be accompanied by a supervising driver who: 
  1. Is at least 21 years of age.
  2. Possesses a valid CDL that is of the same class or higher than your commercial learner’s permit.
  3. Has at least three years driving experience in the same class or higher.
  4. Occupies the front passenger seat with no other front seat occupants.

       Click here to see a map and clickable list of Maryland MVA branch locations that offer the CDL written tests.      

Applying for a Maryland Commercial Driver’s License

      In order to obtain a commercial driver’s license in the state of Maryland, you must:

  • Possess a valid Maryland commercial learner’s permit.
  • Prove you are of legal U.S. status by providing the required documents.
  • Provide proof of current Maryland residency that shows your name and current address (i.e., a utility bill, vehicle registration, insurance card). 
  • Provide your Social Security card (or similar valid documented proof).
  • Provide your current D.O.T. card (cannot be more than 2 years old).
  • Provide proof of vehicle insurance and vehicle registration (must be verified before you can take the test).
  • Provide the rental agreement with your full name printed on the agreement (required only if you’re renting a vehicle for the CDL Skills Test).
  • Provide a passenger with a valid Maryland CDL to ride with you in your commercial vehicle to the test location. (Must be 21 or older)
  • Pass the CDL Skills Test (CDL Skills Tests are given by appointment only).

      The CDL Skills Test consists of a Pre-trip inspection, a Basic Vehicle Control test, and an On-Road Driving test and must be taken in the same class and type of motor vehicle you plan to drive once you obtain your CDL.  If you take the CDL Skills Test in a commercial motor vehicle that is not equipped with air brakes, then you will have an air brakes restriction attached to your commercial driver’s license. 

The CDL Skills Test

      The CDL Skills Test is a three part test and consists of the following:

  • Pre-trip Inspection: Before you can take the CDL driving tests, you will first be tested on your knowledge of the class of vehicle you plan on driving once you obtain your CDL. The Pre-trip inspection also determines if your commercial vehicle is safe enough to drive on public roads.
  • Basic Controls Test: Before you can take the CDL Road Test, you will first need to prove that you have the skills to operate a commercial motor vehicle on public roads. This test consists of various off-road maneuvers such as backing up your vehicle. 
  • Road Skills Test: Once you pass the first two tests, you will be required to drive your commercial vehicle on public roads in various traffic situations. You will be required to operate the same class of commercial vehicle you plan to drive once you obtain your CDL.

      If you fail the CDL Skills Test, you will be required to pay a $20 retest fee in order to take the test again. 

      Be sure to download and study the Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual and the Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual Amendment Insert as they contain important information that will help you pass the CDL Skills Test. If you plan on taking the Class B CDL Skills Test in a school bus, be sure to download and study the Maryland Commercial Driver License School Bus Manual.

     Click here to see a map and clickable list of Maryland MVA branch locations that offer the CDL Skills Test. You can schedule an appointment for the CDL Skills Test online using the MVA Central Scheduling System.

Commercial Driver Self-Certification

      In the state of Maryland, all commercial driver’s license applicants must self-certify as to what type of driving they will be doing (intrastate or interstate), and if they have met all the FMCSA medical requirements. Applicants who do not meet the medical and physical requirements to operate a commercial motor vehicle  may be eligible for a CDL waiver. Please read the CDL Medical Waiver Information Packet for details.

Medical Examination Report for Commercial Driver’s License

      In order to apply for a commercial driver’s license, you must have the Medical Examiner’s Certificate and the Medical Examination Report completed by one of the following:

  • Licensed U.S. doctor of medicine (M.D.)
  • Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O)
  • Licensed physician assistant (P.A.)
  • Advanced practice registered nurse
  • Chiropractor

      The Medical Examiner’s Certificate must be dated within the previous two years and attached to the Medical Examination Report. The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration will only accept your medical forms if they have been completed by a qualified physician who has been certified by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. You can search for a FMCSA certified physician by using the National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners.

      The FMSCA requires you to have at least 20/40 vision in each eye and a field of vision of at least 140 degrees in order to be certified to operate a commercial motor vehicle. In the state of Maryland, you must also have binocular vision and possess the ability to distinguish between red, green, and amber colors.

      If you choose not to have your vision tested at your local Maryland MVA branch office, then you must have an MVA Authorized Online Vision Certification Provider  electronically submit your vision exam results to the MVA via a secure website or have your vision specialist complete the MVA Vision Screening Form (DL-043A).

      You can submit your completed and signed Medical Examiner’s Certificate, the Medical Examination Report, the Maryland Commercial Driver Self-Certification Form, and any applicable medical waivers by doing any of the following:

  • Fax your completed and signed documents to: (410) 787-7959
  • Scan and email your completed and signed documents to:  cdlmedcert@mva.maryland.gov
  • Mail or bring your completed and signed documents in person to: 

                                    Maryland MVA
                                    6601 Ritchie Highway, N.E.
                                    Room 145, Attn: CDL Med Cert
                                    Glen Burnie, MD 21062

       If you have any questions regarding self-certification or would like additional details, you may call the Maryland MVA Customer Service Center at (410) 768-7000 and speak to a customer service representative. You can email any questions you may have to the MVA Customer Service Center at MVACS@mdot.state.md.us.   

Hazmat Endorsement

      Any person that is applying for a Hazardous Materials CDL endorsement is required to undergo a federal background check and federal fingerprint check according to guidelines set by the Transportation Security Administration. All applicants must also provide the required documents to verify their identification and legal U.S. status. For more information, check out the Transportation Security Administration’s F.A.Q. page.

      You can apply for the security threat assessment on the TSA Hazardous Material Endorsement Enrollment Website. You must begin applying at least 30 days before the expiration of your CDL. You can start the application process on the HTAP Online Application Website. To apply by phone call (855) 347-8371. Use the TSA Enrollment Center Locator to find the nearest TSA approved fingerprint office.

Military Drivers

      In the state of Maryland, if you are currently serving in the military or have been honorably discharged within the last 90 days, and you have driven military vehicles that would require a CDL to operate as a civilian with a 2 year safe driving record, then you may qualify for the waiver of the CDL Skills Test and may be exempt from taking the commercial driver skills test. You will still be required to take the written tests. Certain restrictions apply.

      Download, print, and complete the Application for Military Skills Test Waiver to start the process. You may call the Maryland MVA Customer Service Center at (410) 768-7000 and speak to a customer service representative if you have any questions about the Military Skills Test Waiver. You can email any questions you may have to the MVA Customer Service Center at MVACS@mdot.state.md.us

Maryland CDL Endorsements

      H      Placarded Hazmat      Required to transport hazardous materials under DOT regulations. 

      N      Tank Vehicles      Required to transport liquids in bulk containers of 1,000 gallons or more.

      X      Tanker/Hazardous Materials Combination   Required to transport hazardous materials in tank vehicles   

      T      Double/Triple Trailers      Indicates that the CDL holder is certified to operate multiple trailer haulers. 

      P     Passengers      Indicates that the CDL holder is certified to operate passenger vehicles.

      S     School Bus      Indicates that the CDL holder is authorized to operate a school bus. The “P” endorsement is also required.

      TPXS      All CDL Endorsements      Indicates that the CDL holder carries all the CDL endorsements.

Maryland CDL Restrictions

      The following CDL restrictions are based on the driver passing the necessary commercial driver’s license written knowledge tests or driving skills tests. The restrictions may be added or removed from the commercial driver’s license: 

  •  Intrastate driving only (may only drive a CMV within Maryland state lines).
  •  May not drive CMV equipped with air brakes.
  • M – May not drive a Class A bus.
  • N – May not drive either a Class A or Class B bus.
  • O – May not drive a tractor trailer.
  • V – Medical variance restriction (waiver for vision, diabetes, or Skill’s Performance Evaluation).

Important Maryland Commercial Driver’s License Resources

MVA Central Scheduling System
Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual
Maryland Commercial Driver License Manual Amendment Insert
Maryland Commercial Driver License School Bus Manual
Maryland CDL Practice Tests
Application for Military Skills Test Waiver
CDL Medical Waiver Information Packet
MVA Vision Screening Form DL-043A
MVA Authorized Online Vision Certification Provider
Maryland Commercial Driver Self-Certification Form
Medical Examination Report Form DL-171
Medical Examiner’s Certificate DL-171
Medical Examination Report Form 649-F
Medical Examiner’s Certificate 
National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners

 

      Check out our list of truck driving schools in Maryland that will provide you with the necessary skills to obtain your commercial driver’s license and start your career in the exciting field of commercial truck driving! You may also want to check out our nationwide list of truck driving schools. 

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Map of Maryland CDL Test Locations 

TitleAddress
1. Annapolis MVA 160 Harry S. Truman Pkwy, Annapolis, MD 21401
2. Baltimore City MVA 5425 Reisterstown Road, Baltimore, MD 21215
3. Bel Air MVA 501 W. MacPhail Road, Bel Air, MD 21014
4. Beltsville MVA 11760 Baltimore Avenue, Beltsville, MD 20705
5. Cumberland/LaVale MVA** 13300 Winchester Road SW, Cumberland, MD 21502
6. Easton MVA** 9148 Centreville Road, Easton, MD 21601
7. Elkton MVA** 105 Chesapeake Blvd, Suite A, Elkton, MD 21921
8. Essex MVA Middlesex Shopping Center, 1338-A Eastern Blvd, Essex, MD 21221
9. Frederick MVA** 1601 Bowman's Farm Road, Frederick, MD 21701
10. Gaithersburg MVA** 15 Metropolitan Grove Road, Gaithersburg, MD 20878
11. Glen Burnie MVA Glen Burnie Headquarters, 6601 Ritchie Hwy NE, Glen Burnie, MD 21062
12. Hagerstown MVA** 18306 Colonel Henry K. Douglas Drive, Hagerstown, MD 21740
13. Largo MVA 10251 Central Avenue, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772
14. Loveville MVA 27351 Point Lookout Road, Leonardtown, MD 20650
15. Prince Frederick MVA 200 Duke Street, Prince Frederick, MD 21678
16. Salisbury MVA** 251 Tilghman Road, Salisbury, MD 21801
17. Waldorf MVA St. Charles Business Park, 11 Industrial Park Drive, Waldorf, MD 20602
18. Westminster MVA 1106 Baltimore Blvd, Westminster, MD 21157-7025
19. White Oak MVA 2131 Industrial Pkwy, Silver Spring, MD 20904

 

 

**The CDL Skills Test is available at this location (by appointment only).

Some CDL testing locations require you to set up an appointment. CDL testing hours may vary. Please call the testing location for more information. 

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Maryland CDL Requirements
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