DVS Logo

Driver and Vehicle Services

A Division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety

commercial driver license medical self-certification

Starting January 30, 2012, if you are renewing a Minnesota commercial driver’s license (CDL) or are applying for a Minnesota CDL, you will need to certify the following information with Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS):
  • The type of driving you are engaged in (interstate or intrastate) and 
  • Whether you are subject to or exempt from the medical examination requirements of 49 CFR part 391 or Minnesota Statutes, chapter 221
The Commercial Driver License Medical Self-Certification Form must be completed and if you certify that you are subject to medical examination requirements, you must provide a copy of your valid Medical Examiner’s Certificate (MEC) and any required waiver. As of December 22, 2015, a newly revised version of the MEC (Form MCSA-5876) should be used by medical examiner's.
Faxed and mailed medical certificate documents are received daily and DVS processes requests in the order in which they are received.
To check the status of your license, visit: Check Driver’s License Status.


What you need to know:

  • The self-certification requirement goes into effect on January 30, 2012
  • Applies to drivers applying for, renewing, upgrading or replacing a commercial driver’s license, class A, B or C 
  • As a commercial driver, if there is a change in your medical status or interstate/intrastate status, you must provide DVS with a new self-certification form (PS33203), and if necessary new medical examination documents
  • The valid medical examination certificate must be kept current, regardless of a valid CDL
  • The self-certification is required by Minnesota statutes and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.
    Reference: Minnesota Statutes, sections 171.162, 221.031 and 221.0314, and 49 CFR 383.71 and 383.73.


Additional Information

When applying for a CDL (A, B, or C class), renew a CDL, apply for a higher class of CDL, or apply for a new endorsement on a CDL, your application must include a CDL Medical Self-Certification Form (PS33203), on which you will need to certify that you operate in one of the following categories:
Category 1 – Non-exempt Interstate, subject to 49 CFR part 391 (must also provide a current medical examiner’s certificate and any waivers indicated on the certificate)
Category 2 – Exempt Interstate, exempt from medical examination requirements of 49 CFR part 391

Category 3 – Non-exempt Intrastate, subject to state medical examination requirements of Minnesota Statutes, chapter 221 (must provide current medical examiner’s certificate and any waivers indicated on the certificate)

Category 4 – Exempt Intrastate, exempt from state medical examination requirements listed in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 221.
Refer to the Self-Certification Just the Facts for guidance on selecting a Category.
Minnesota Statutes and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require the self-certification. Reference: Minnesota Statutes, sections 171.162, 221.031, and 221.0314, and 49 CFR 383.71 and 383.73

Attention School Bus Drivers

In Minnesota, all CDL holders with a school bus endorsement MUST submit a current medical examiner's certificate*.

Keeping Things Current

You must ensure that your medical documentation on file with DVS remains current and accurate. If you self-certify in a category exempt from medical certification requirements (category 2 and 4 above), and later change to a non-exempt type of operation (category 1 or 3), you must recertify in the appropriate category and provide proof of current medical certification to avoid potential enforcement actions and the loss of your commercial driving privilege.
Need more information? Call us at (651) 297-5029.


Determining What Category Applies to You

For the purpose of complying with the new requirements for self-certification, it is important to know how you are using the commercial vehicle. To help you accurately complete the self-certification form, you must determine how you are using the commercial motor vehicle (CMV).
Follow these easy steps:
Step 1: Do you, or will you, use a CDL to operate a CMV in interstate or intrastate commerce?
Interstate commerce is when you drive a CMV:
    • From one state to another state or a foreign country;
    • Between two places within a state, but during part of the trip, the CMV crosses into another state or foreign country; or
    • Between two places within a state, but the cargo is part of a trip that began or will end in another state or foreign country.
Intrastate commerce is when you drive a CMV within a state and you do not meet any of the descriptions above for interstate commerce.

If you operate in both intrastate commerce and interstate commerce, you must choose interstate commerce.


Step 2: Once you decide you operate or will operate in interstate commerce or intrastate commerce, you must decide whether

you operate (or expect to operate) in an exempt or non-exempt status. This decision will tell you to which of the four types of
commerce you must self-certify.

Interstate Commerce:

You operate in category 2-exempt interstate commerce when you drive a CMV in interstate commerce only for the following exempted activities:

  • As federal, state or local government employees
  • The transportation of human corpses or sick or injured persons
  • The operation of fire truck or rescue vehicles while involved in emergency and related operations
  • Primarily in the transportation of propane winter heating fuel when responding to an emergency condition requiring immediate response such as damage to a propane gas system after a storm or flooding;
  • In response to a pipeline emergency such as a leak or rupture
  • In custom harvesting on a farm or to transportation of farm machinery and supplies used in the custom harvesting operation to and from a farm or within 150 miles of the farm (does not apply to the transport of hazardous materials requiring a placard or to combination vehicles)
  • Beekeeper in the seasonal transportation of bees
  • As a private motor carrier of passengers for non-business purposes
  • To transport migrant workers
If you answered yes to one or more of the above activities as the only operation in which you drive, you operate in exempted interstate commerce and do not need a federal medical examiner’s certificate.

If you answered no to all of the above activities, you operate in non-exempted interstate commerce and are required to provide a current medical examiner's certificate* (49 CFR 391.45), commonly referred to as a medical certificate or DOT card. Most CDL holders who drive in interstate commerce are non-exempt interstate commerce drivers.

If you operate in both exempt and non- exempt interstate commerce, you must select category 1 – non-exempt interstate commerce to be qualified to operate in both types of interstate commerce.

Intrastate Commerce:

You operate in category 4-exempted intrastate commerce when you drive a CMV only in intrastate commerce activities for which Minnesota statutes do not require you to meet medical certification requirements. Refer to Minnesota Statutes, chapter 221.

Most CDL drivers operating in Minnesota operate in category 3 – non-exempt intrastate commerce and are required to obtain a medical certificate. This includes:
  • Drivers of vehicles over 26, 000 pounds gross vehicle weight
  • Drivers of vehicles that carry hazardous materials that require a placard
  • Drivers of vehicle designed to transport 16 or more persons including the driver


A Word About Waivers

If your medical examiner's certificate* is only valid with a vision, diabetes or a skills performance evaluation waiver granted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA), or if you are an intrastate driver with a MnDOT waiver or hold a DVS School Bus Waiver, you must also provide a copy of your waiver.

To obtain a federal exemption or waiver, you must contact the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA), which will advise on how to proceed.

Diabetes/Vision waivers:
Skill Performance: http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regulations/topics/medical/spepackage.htm

FMCSA Phone: 1 (800) 832-5660
FMCSA Midwestern Service Center: (708) 283-3577
For information about MnDOT waivers, contact the MnDOT Driver Medical Program at
(651) 366-3674.

For a printable version of this page: CDL Medical Self-certification Information Sheet


*IMPORTANT NOTICE Regarding Medical Examiner's Certificate: As of December 22, 2015, a newly revised version of the MEC (Form MCSA-5876) should be used by medical examiner's.