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  • Renewing Your CDL in Wisconsin

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    Renewal Notice

    Wisconsin commercial driver's licenses (CDL) are renewed for a period of 8 years. When the time comes to renew your CDL, you will need to go in person to your local DMV service center to apply for a renewal.

    Your renewal notice should arrive in your mail 45 to 60 days before your license expires, as long as your address is current. Here's what you'll need to be prepared to do when you go to the DMV for your renewal:

    • Present the renewal notice.
    • Surrender your current CDL.
    • Show your Social Security card.
    • Pay the $74 renewal fee.
    • Successfully complete an eye examination.
    • Have your photograph taken.

    If you do not have your renewal notice, you will be required to complete form Driver License Application Form (MV3001), a Renewal Request and present it along with the other information. You may also be required to get a new physical exam.

    Hazmat Renewal Notices

    If you have a CDL with a hazmat endorsement, you should receive your CDL renewal notice before your CDL is set to expire, since there are additional new requirements for hazardous materials (hazmat) endorsement holders.

    You'll need to complete the paperwork for a special Threat Assessment Investigation, which is a very specific type of background check for hazmat carriers. It is mandated by the Patriot Act, a federal law concerning national security.

    You will also be required to successfully complete a written knowledge test each time you renew your hazmat endorsements


    In order to comply with this new regulation, you will need to have your fingerprints taken as well, before your hazmat endorsement can be renewed. Fingerprints are accepted from only a few facilities, so if you need to renew a hazmat endorsement, you will need to check first with the DMV to see where you should go for fingerprinting.

    Threat Assessment

    You'll need to undergo a new background investigation. Find out more on hazmat material endorsements at the Wisconsin DMV website.

    School Bus Drivers

    If you are a school bus driver, you will be required to successfully complete a written knowledge test and a driving skills test each time you renew your CLD and school bus driver's endorsement. In addition, you must also supply the DMV with a current medical report.

    New Federal Requirement

    You must self-certify your type of vehicle operation with the Wisconsin DMV. This means you must self-certify one of the following driving tiers:

    • Tier 1―Non-Excepted Interstate
    • Tier 2―Excepted Interstate
    • Tier 3―Non-Excepted Intrastate
    • Tier 4―Excepted Intrastate

    If you choose Tier 1, you must provide the DMV with a federal medical certificate.

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