New laws to make licensing process smoother

Published 1:12 pm Friday, July 8, 2022

As a result of the 2022 General Assembly session, three new laws make the licensing process smoother through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and its partners by expanding commercial driver’s license (CDL) testing providers, removing the wait time and fee for retesting and extending the validity of the CDL skills test certification.

CDL testing change. DMV currently certifies government third parties to enable these organizations to conduct the CDL skills tests for the applicants they employ or train on site, saving them a trip to DMV. Under the new law, these certified third-party testers also will be able to test people enrolled in a CDL training course offered by a community college or those employed or trained by another government entity, such as a local school system. This change offers more options for CDL testing, particularly for high-demand school bus driver positions. (House Bill 530, patroned by Del. Amanda Batten; House Bill 1146, patroned by Del. Robert Bell; and Senate Bill 301, patroned by Sen. Creigh Deeds)

Waiting periods lifted. Applicants age 18 and older who need to retake the driver’s license or CDL knowledge exam no longer need to wait 15 days to retest. The $2 reexamination fee has also been removed as part of this new law. This will allow customers to retake their knowledge exam sooner, without penalty. (Senate Bill 301, patroned by Sen. Creigh Deeds; and House Bill 530, patroned by Del. Amanda Batten)

Certification extension. The validity of a CDL road skills test certification has been extended from 60 days to six months, which allows customers more time to visit DMV to get their CDL after completing both their knowledge and skills tests. (Senate Bill 301, patroned by Sen. Creigh Deeds; and House Bill 530, patroned by Del. Amanda Batten)

“Our enhanced processes will allow even more customers to quickly and safely advance through the licensing process whether it be in our office or through one of our trusted testing partners,” Acting DMV Commissioner Linda Ford said. “This is particularly important for applicants in the high-demand commercial driving field and we are pleased to be able to expand service options.”

These new laws took effect July 1.