Minnesota CDL Information
Drivers who wish to qualify for a commercial driver license (CDL) in the state of Minnesota must hold a valid state driver’s license and must be at least 18 years of age to drive within state lines and 21 years of age to drive outside of the state. In addition to the age requirement, drivers must meet identification requirements, and complete the application and written tests for a commercial learner’s permit (CLP). If the driver passes, the CLP must be held for at least 14 days, during which they are eligible to practice driving with a licensed commercial driver in the front seat. After the 14-day period, drivers are eligible to apply for a CDL, which includes passing a skills test and a driving test. A CDL is required to drive any vehicle that falls within Class A, B, or C categories.
Class A vehicles include any combination of vehicles with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 pounds or more, provided that the gross vehicle weight rating of the towed vehicle is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
Class B vehicles include any single vehicle with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 26,001 or more pounds, as well as any vehicle towing another vehicle that does not exceed a weight of 10,000 pounds.
Class C vehicles include any vehicle or combination of vehicles that does not meet the criteria of either Class A or B but is designed to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) or is used in transporting of materials classified as hazardous in the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act. Applicants must also have a passenger or hazardous materials endorsement to drive a Class C vehicle.
Additional testing and fees are required in Minnesota to add endorsements or remove restrictions from a CDL, so be sure you know which ones, if any, apply to your vehicle. Minnesota requires drivers wishing to add school bus and passenger transport endorsements to take a road test in an appropriate vehicle.
- H Hazardous materials
- N Tank vehicle
- P Passenger transport
- S School bus
- T Doubles/Triples
- X Tanker and hazardous materials
- E Automatic transmission CMV
- K Intrastate only
- L Vehicles without air brakes
- M No Class A passenger bus
- N No Class B passenger bus
- O No tractor-trailer CMV
- P No passengers in CMV bus
- V FMCSA waiver
- W Buses less than 24-passenger capacity
- X No cargo in CMV tank vehicle
- Z Air over hydraulic brake system
In Minnesota, certain types of vehicles may be exempt from the CDL requirement. These include emergency vehicles, farm trucks that are controlled and operated by a farmer or immediate family member or employee of the farmer, some recreational vehicles, backup snowplow drivers who are operating a commercial vehicle for the purpose of removing snow or ice from a roadway by plowing, salting, or sanding. There are restrictions that apply to each of these instances, so please consult the Minnesota CDL manual for details.