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Compliance Review: Annual DOT Requirements to Meet Before 2024
Mariah Barr
8 mins read

Foley can help you take care of annual FMCSA Clearinghouse queries, UCR filings, and MVR checks for your business.

The end of 2023 is right around the corner and there’s so much to think about. The holiday season is officially here, and so is the hustle and bustle that comes along with it.

Before you get caught up in that madness – have you met all your annual DOT compliance requirements?

It’s easy to let them slip by, but the consequences just aren’t worth it. Plus, it’s super easy to take care of them with Foley so you can enjoy the holidays stress-free.

Here are a few of the annual compliance matters you should make sure you’re on time (or even better, early) for:

  1. FMCSA Clearinghouse Queries
  2. Unified Carrier Registration (UCR)
  3. Motor Vehicle Reports (MVRs)

Now is the time to review your DOT recordkeeping and compliance requirements to ensure you have everything in order before 2023 comes to an end.

Annual FMCSA Clearinghouse Queries

As a motor carrier, you’re required to run a Clearinghouse query on all your DOT-regulated drivers every year. The time in which you perform the queries can be based on your employees’ hire dates or another 12-month period determined by you. Limited queries fulfill the annual requirement.

Here’s a quick refresher on the differences between a full and a limited query in the DOT Clearinghouse:

  • A limited query reveals if a driver’s record exists in the Clearinghouse, but specific violation information is not released. Paper or electronic general driver consent is required and must include how long the consent will last, which can be more than one year.
  • A full query provides detailed information about any drug and alcohol program violations in a driver’s Clearinghouse record. Electronic driver consent must be given in the Clearinghouse beforehand because full queries release personal driver information. Employers can use the same limited consent form used to run the annual query.

Important note: the annual query does not meet the pre-employment query requirement, since the annual is a limited query that only shows if a driver’s information exists in the Clearinghouse. 

If you run a limited query on a driver and the results state they have violations in the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, you’ll need to run a full Clearinghouse query on that driver within 24 hours. If you can’t get electronic driver consent and run the query in that time, they won’t be able to perform safety-sensitive functions until you’re able to do so.

Get Clearinghouse CompliantRemember, you must keep a record of all FMCSA Clearinghouse queries and all information received in response to each query made for three years. As of January 6, 2023, an employer who maintains a valid Clearinghouse registration will fulfill this DOT recordkeeping requirement.

Feeling overwhelmed with these queries, consents, and deadlines? Foley can take care of your DOT Clearinghouse queries and ensure your drivers give proper consent before running them.

Annual Unified Carrier Registration (UCR)

If you’re planning to operate across state lines in 2024, you’ll need to purchase your Unified Carrier Registration for the upcoming year. You must complete this registration by December 31, 2023, to avoid potential consequences when UCR enforcement starts on January 1. 

Click here to file your 2024 UCR

The cost of your UCR filing varies depending on the number of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) your company operates. You can learn more about these fees, and file your 2024 UCR here. Foley can take care of your 2024 UCR filing as part of our DOT compliance services.

Need a refresher on what UCR is, why you need to do it, or anything else UCR-related? This Foley article tells you everything you need to know before UCR enforcement season begins.

Annual Motor Vehicle Report (MVR)

Every year you must run an updated MVR report on your drivers to ensure they are qualified to continue driving a CMV– and that there are no safety issues where you need to pay extra attention. The report looks into a driver’s current license status, accident history, and record of driving violations.

This new motor vehicle report should be placed in your employee’s driver qualification file to replace last year’s MVR check. 

Create Digital Driver Files with EaseBut what happens if that MVR check comes back with a violation? It’s up to you to determine the severity of the situation and take corrective action. You may choose to provide a written warning, suspend the employee, or even terminate them.

But what if your driver’s violation is a surprise and you didn’t see it coming? In that case, you’ll get a first-hand experience of what Foley has always said about the MVR record check: it’s a justifiable annual requirement, but it doesn’t let you see driver violations in real time. After running the check, you could be in the dark for months before finding out about your fleet’s traffic violations. That’s where MVR monitoring comes in.

MVR monitoring closes the gap between the annual MVR check and your concern about undetected violations your fleet may be committing. Foley’s MVR monitoring program instantly alerts you when any of your enrolled drivers are caught speeding, driving distracted, or even have their license revoked, for example.

Prevent up to 34% of driver violations now

Using an MVR monitoring program can also help reduce your insurance premiums since you’re taking proactive steps to operate a safe and compliant fleet. Find out all the advantages of Foley’s MVR monitoring program in our helpful article: How MVR Monitoring Can Protect Your Business. 

How DOT Compliance Software Can Help You Meet Your Annual Requirements

Worried you might be missing something as the end of 2023 gets closer and closer? Check out Foley’s complete checklist of DOT recordkeeping requirements with the retention times for each one. This can help you fill any compliance gaps and better prepare for an offsite audit.

Taking care of your annual DOT recordkeeping and compliance needs doesn’t have to be yet another item on your end-of-year to-do list. Foley can help you navigate DOT Clearinghouse queries, UCR filing, and MVR checks.

Foley's DOT compliance software automates each of these annual requirements so you never have to think twice about them. Talk to one of our compliance specialists or get a free software demo to see our DOT compliance services in action and relieve the stress surrounding these yearly deadlines. Fill out the form below to get started. 

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