How to Obtain a Commercial Drivers License in Ohio

Ohio CDL license requirements exist to ensure that certain drivers are capable of operating certain kinds of vehicles. Holding an OH CDL drivers license means that you can safely drive large vehicles typically intended for commercial use. These vehicles generally include cargo trucks, buses and other such vehicles used to transport goods or people. A CDL license has different requirements from a regular Ohio driver’s license, and a regular license cannot be used to legally drive a commercial vehicle. The state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) is responsible for establishing these licensure requirements for commercial vehicle operators. While getting a commercial drivers license may have more rigorous requirements than obtaining a regular driver’s license, the BMV makes the process clear and fairly simple. More information on how to apply to a commercial drivers license can be found in the content below, including information on the requirements and procedures involved.

Ohio Commercial Drivers License Requirements

To obtain a commercial drivers license in Ohio, you are required to fulfill certain requirements that the BMV has established. These CDL qualifications are distinct from the requirements that drivers of non-commercial vehicles may have when applying for a regular drivers license. You cannot get a commercial drivers license in OH unless you are at least 18 years of age. This differs from the state’s laws for non-commercial drivers, which grant licenses to residents who are as young as 16 years of age. Additionally, getting a CDL requires that you already possess a regular state drivers license. This is a requirement even if you wish to obtain a commercial learner permit (CLP) in order to practice driving prior to getting a CDL. The state’s CDL requirements also include the provision that all commercial driver’s license applicants must be United States citizens or legal permanent residents. You must provide proof of your US citizenship or legal permanent residency at the time that you apply for your CDL. Ohio CDL license applicants must also self-certify the kind of commercial driving they intend to do with their commercial drivers licenses. More details on self-certification can be found in the next section.

Getting a commercial drivers license in Ohio also involves taking a written and practical test. Each CDL driver license class type, ranging from A to C, requires specific knowledge. Additionally, each OH CDL drivers license endorsement requires an applicant to familiarize him or herself with the privileges and restrictions that each one entails. Commercial drivers license applicants also need to undergo a medical examination, especially if they are applying for certain endorsements. There are particular requirements for the kind of medical exam conducted, as well as who conducts this exam. To learn more about the requirements for obtaining a commercial drivers license, you can download our comprehensive guide today.

How to Get a Commercial Drivers License in Ohio

The procedures for how to apply for a commercial drivers license in Ohio can seem to be somewhat involved, especially when compared to regular drivers license requirements. Keep in mind that these OH CDL drivers license procedures are intended to be rigorous in order to ensure the safety of drivers and passengers on Ohio’s roads. The first thing a CDL license applicant should do prior to obtaining a commercial driver license, is to obtain a commercial learner permit (CLP). A CLP is only issued to Ohio residents who are at least 18 years of age and currently hold a regular state drivers license. As with CDL license requirements, CLP applicants must also provide proof of being either a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident. Possessing a CLP is not required to obtain a CDL in Ohio. However, if a commercial driver license applicant wants firsthand experience learning to drive a commercial vehicle, he or she will need to obtain a CLP in order to practice under the supervision of an experienced driver who already possesses a CDL.

An Ohio CDL driver license applicant must also self-certify the kind of commercial driving he or she intends to do. OH commercial license self-certification involves filling out a form in which you certify that you will be using your commercial driver’s license to conduct one of four categories of driving. You can find this form through the BMV and submit it either online, via mail or in person. Anyone wanting to obtain a commercial drivers license, regardless of the category, must undergo a CDL medical exam. This exam tests a commercial driving license applicant’s overall health but pays particular attention to an applicant’s vision and hearing. A few exemptions may exist, but they typically require an applicant to follow another set of procedures.

An important part of getting a commercial drivers license in Ohio is taking and passing the CDL written exam, as well as the practical driving test. These tests can be taken either through a BMV facility or at an independent, third-party testing site. CDL license applicants are required to pay a fee for taking the written and practical tests. You can access more detailed OH CDL information, including CDL requirements, fees and waivers, by downloading our comprehensive guide.