Nebraska CDL Requirements

Nebraska CDL Classes

      You must be at least 18 years old to operate a commercial motor vehicle within the state of Nebraska (intrastate) and at least 21 years of age to drive a commercial motor vehicle outside the state of Nebraska (interstate). You must also be at least 21 years old to transport materials that are deemed hazardous and require a placard. You need a Nebraska 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 Nebraska Commercial Learner’s Permit

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

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

  • Be at least 18 years old for intrastate driving (within the state of Nebraska).
  • Be at least 21 years of age for interstate driving (outside the state of Nebraska).
  • Be at least 21 years of age to transport materials deemed hazardous.
  • Possess a valid Nebraska Class O driver’s license.
  • Provide proof of identity.
  • Provide proof of your Social Security number (i.e., your Social Security card, payroll check stub, W-2 form, etc.).
  • Prove you are of legal U.S. status by providing the required documents .
  • Provide proof of your current Nebraska residency that shows your name and address (i.e., a utility bill, vehicle registration, insurance card, etc.).
  • Provide your current D.O.T. Medical Examiner’s Certificate and completed Medical Examination Report (cannot be more than 2 years old).
  • Provide your completed and signed Nebraska CDL Medical Self-Certification Form.
  • Pass the CDL general knowledge written test. 
  • Pay any CDL written test fees.
  • Pay any CDL application fees.
  • Pay the $12.50 fee to cover the cost of the commercial learner’s permit (paid to the County Treasurer).

      If you have any questions about which documents to bring to your nearest Nebraska Driver Licensing Office when you apply for your commercial learner’s permit, you can either call your local Nebraska Driver Licensing Office, or you can call the Nebraska Driver Licensing Services at (402) 471-3861 and speak to a customer service representative from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST Monday thru Friday. Their fax number is (402) 471-4020

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 examination might be waived under the following conditions:

  • The applicant furnishes a Nebraska CDL that is either valid or has been expired for less than one year.
  • The applicant furnishes a valid CDL from another state.
  • The applicant is renewing a Nebraska commercial learner’s permit that is either valid or has been expired for less than one year.

      All CDL knowledge tests are administered in English and in written form. 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.

      You can take the CDL written tests on a walk-in basis or schedule an appointment. Driver Licensing Offices tend to be busier in the afternoon so, walk-in applicants should plan accordingly. Please factor in what time the exam station closes when scheduling your appointment or arriving at the station on a walk-in basis, as the CDL written tests will take approximately sixty minutes or more to complete, based on the number of tests you plan on taking.

      Once you successfully pass the CDL written tests and pay the required fees, you will be issued a commercial learner’s permit. The commercial learner’s permit will be valid for up to six months from the date it is issued and will allow you to practice driving a commercial motor vehicle. You may only operate a CMV under the supervision of a front seat passenger who is at least 21 years old and carries a valid CDL of the same class or greater than the class of vehicle you are operating.

      If you do not successfully pass the CDL Skills Test and obtain your commercial driver’s license before your commercial learner’s permit expires, then you will be forced to repeat the entire process. You may only renew the commercial learner’s permit once every two years.

      Be sure to download and study the Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing as it contains the information you need to pass the CDL tests, including some sample test questions. Over 60% of first time CDL applicants fail the written test!

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

      Click here to see a map and clickable list of Nebraska Driver Licensing Offices that offer the CDL written tests.

Applying for a Nebraska Commercial Driver’s License

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

  • Possess a valid Nebraska commercial learner’s permit (CLP).
  • Possess a valid Nebraska Class O driver’s license.
  • Possess a 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 a test vehicle of the same class as the CDL you are testing for (must display a valid inspection sticker).
  • Provide a passenger that is 21 years of age or older with a valid Nebraska CDL to ride with you in your test vehicle to the test location.
  • Pass the CDL Skills Test.
  • Pay any CDL Skills Test fees.
  • Pay the $13.50 fee for a 1 year CDL (paid to the County Treasurer).
  • Pay the $24.50 fee for a 2 year CDL (paid to the County Treasurer).
  • Pay the $35.50 fee for a 3 year CDL (paid to the County Treasurer).
  • Pay the $46.50 fee for a 4 year CDL (paid to the County Treasurer).
  • Pay the $57.50 fee for a 5 year CDL (paid to the County Treasurer).

The CDL Skills Test

      The CDL Skills Test consists of a Pre-trip Inspection, a Brake Check, a Basic Vehicle Controls 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. 

  • 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, and will include a brake check.
  • Brake Check: The brake check is an examination of your air brakes or hydraulic brakes, followed by a parking brake check. All phases of the brake check must be carried out successfully to pass. 
  • 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, moving your vehicle forward, and making turns within a defined area. 
  • 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.

The CDL Pre-Trip Inspection

      The Basic Controls Test may include the following maneuvers:

  • 90 degree alley docking
  • Straight line backing
  • Parallel parking (driver side)
  • Parallel parking (conventional)
  • Offset back/right
  • Offset back/left

      The Road Skills Test will take at least 60 minutes to finish and will be administered on a route predetermined by the examiner. The test route may include the following:

  • Starting
  • Stopping
  • Braking
  • Turning
  • Observing traffic signs
  • Observing traffic signals
  • Observing other traffic
  • Using vehicle controls
  • Maintaining proper lane positions
  • Downgrades
  • Downgrade stopping
  • Upgrades
  • Upgrade stopping
  • Railroad crossings
  • Bridge clearance
  • Underpass clearance
  • General observance of traffic laws
  • General safe driving practices for trucks or buses

      On the day of your CDL Skills Test appointment you must:

  1. Arrive on time.
  2. Bring your commercial learner’s permit.
  3. Bring your valid D.O.T. medical card.
  4. Bring a passenger qualified to drive a CMV with the same class of CDL or greater than the test vehicle.
  5. Bring a test vehicle that is the same class of license that you are testing for and that has passed inspection.
  6. Bring the revenue needed to pay the necessary fees to obtain your commercial driver’s license.

      Failure to do any of the above will result in an immediate cancellation of your CDL Skills Test appointment! The Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles advises applicants to schedule their CDL Skills Test appointment a few weeks in advance. The Nebraska DMV has the right to cancel any CDL Skills Test appointment due to bad weather, under sourced staffing, or any other unforseen circumstances.

      Once you pass the CDL Skills Test and pay the required fees, you will obtain your commercial driver’s license. The commercial driver’s license will be valid for up to one to five years depending on which CDL you pay for. All driver licensing fees are paid to the County Treasurer.

      Be sure to download and study the Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing as it contains pertinent information that will help you pass the CDL Skills Test. Be sure to download and study the Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing CDL Skills Tests Pilot to help you pass the CDL Skills Test.

     Click here to see a map and clickable list of Nebraska DMV certified Third Party Testers that offer the CDL Skills Test.

Commercial Driver Self-Certification

      In the state of Nebraska, 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. You can download and print a copy of the self-certification form here.

      For more details on how to self-certify in the state of Nebraska, check out the Nebraska CDL Self-Certification Categories Chart and the Nebraska CDL Self-Certification FAQs.

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 Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles 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. Under certain conditions, you may be able to be waived from these and other medical requirements.     

      Once you have completed and signed the , the Medical Examiner’s Certificate, the Medical Examination Report, the Nebraska CDL New and Renewal –  CDL Data Form, and any applicable medical waivers, you can submit your documents by doing either of the following:

  • Bring your completed and signed documents to any Nebraska Driver Licensing Office.
  • Mail your completed and signed documents to:

                               Department of Motor Vehicles 
                               Driver Licensing Services 
                               P.O. Box 94726 
                               Lincoln, NE 68509                                               

      Be sure to double check and, if needed, correct your information before you submit your documents. If you have any questions regarding self-certification, you can call the Nebraska Driver Licensing Services at (402) 471-3861 and speak to a customer service representative from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST Monday thru Friday. Their fax number is (402) 471-4020.  

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 Nebraska, 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 CDL Skills Test Waiver to start the process. 

      If you have any questions about the Military Skills Test Waiver, you can either call your local Nebraska Driver Licensing Office, or you can call the Nebraska Driver Licensing Services at (402) 471-3861 and speak to a customer service representative from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST Monday thru Friday. Their fax number is (402) 471-4020.

Nebraska 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 CDL holder is certified to operate multiple trailer haulers. 

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

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

Nebraska CDL Restrictions

       I      Impaired Intrastate Only

      K      Intrastate Only

      L      Vehicles Without Air Brakes

      M      Except Class A Bus

      N      Except Class A and B Bus

      O      Except Tractor Trailer

      V      Medical Variance Required

Important Nebraska Commercial Driver’s License Resources 

Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing
Nebraska Manual for Commercial Driver’s Licensing CDL Skills Tests Pilot
Nebraska CDL Practice Tests
Nebraska Driver License and Permit Fees Chart
Application for Military Skills Test Waiver
Nebraska CDL Self-Certification Categories Chart
Nebraska CDL Self-Certification FAQs
Nebraska New and Renewal – CDL Data Form
Nebraska DMV Statement of Vision Form
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 Nebraska 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 Nebraska CDL Written Test Locations 

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

 

Map of Nebraska Third Party CDL Skills Test Locations**

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**CDL Third Party examiners are required to provide a 24-hour advance notice to the DMV prior to administering any CDL skills tests to applicants. Please plan accordingly.

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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Nebraska CDL Requirements
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