Have A Record. Worth Trying To Get A CDL?

Topic 12669 | Page 1

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Jacobi's Comment
member avatar

Hello,

I've been thinking about getting my CDL and getting my life back on track as an OTR trucker. I like the idea of traveling and seeing the country and I'm alright with all that entails. But I'm worried that some of my past will preclude me from getting hired and make paying for the CDL classes a waste of time.

I have two driving with suspended license charges from 4 years ago. One was plead no contest (I didn't know it was suspended), I paid and had it reinstated same day as pull over. A couple days later, same cop pulls me over and apparently the system didn't update and I got charged again, but it was dismissed. This in Rhode Island.

Another potential issue would be my criminal record. Three years ago I was charged with misdemeanor possession w/ intent. I've been clean for three years and just got off probation three weeks ago. This was in Massachusetts, where as a condition of my probation if I stayed clean the charge would be dismissed.

My MVR is not completely spotless either. Two not at fault accidents one 5+ years ago, one 3+. Both were due to mechanical failure. I also have a speeding ticket from 2 or 3 years ago. I'm waiting on a copy of my MVR from the DMV for exact time frame.

Lastly, I've read that trucking companies want to see no gaps in employment. I've been unemployed since I was put on probation three years ago, but I've been working under the table jobs wherever I could find them. I've also read that some companies will allow you to just have notarized affidavits from friends and family to confirm unemployment, is this true?

After reading this and other forums/sites it seems that it would be pretty difficult to get started in trucking with this sort of record. Am I right about that or am I just psyching myself out?

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

MVR:

Motor Vehicle Record

An MVR is a report of your driving history, as reported from your state Department of Motor Vehicles. Information on this report may include Drivers License information, point history, violations, convictions, and license status on your driving record.

Boomshaker E.'s Comment
member avatar

As far as the criminal record part, "most" companies are looking for FELONIES in your past. If a company asks have you been convicted of a Felony, answer them NO! Technically it's the truth. If they ask about misdemeanors then I would be open with them and answer honestly. Right now there are many many trucking companies that need drivers. Someone will pick you up as long as you are straight forward with them. Hope you land something brother.

C T.'s Comment
member avatar

I see no one has replied yet so ill chime in. I started applying for pre hires months ago, I'm in school right now. Companies typically ask the same questions, driving record, employment, criminal record etc. From my own experience, different companies have different "standards". For example, I applied a company called Rosedale and a flatbed company McElroy. Rosedale sent me a pre hire early the next morning while McElroy wanted forms sent in online, faxed in and even called my references asking about my character. My record isn't the same as yours but the least you can do is give it a shot and apply to as many places as possible. My father n law has felonies on his record and still managed to find work. So there is hope.

Pre Hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Pre Hires:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Cwc's Comment
member avatar

I've got a felony from my misspent youth... Someone will pick you up. Most without a second thought.

Stump's Comment
member avatar

I have been to prison two time and have a record as long as Tex is big and I got on with a good company they just talked to me bout to make sure I wasn't gonna be a problem and they gave me a chance it's been hard but if you put in the work it will come together good luck

Nathan G.'s Comment
member avatar

I got felony had no problem getting picked up. but on the other hand I also don't have any drug or alcohol charges and a clean mvr. so good luck bud hope its work out

MVR:

Motor Vehicle Record

An MVR is a report of your driving history, as reported from your state Department of Motor Vehicles. Information on this report may include Drivers License information, point history, violations, convictions, and license status on your driving record.

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