DMV Announces New CDL Medical Exam Guide

The California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) recently updated "A Physician Guide for Commercial Driver License Medical Exams." There are numerous changes that commercial driver medical examiners need to be aware of including changes to physical qualifications for drivers.

This booklet will be especially helpful if you:

  • Do these exams infrequently.
  • Encounter conditions that may be disqualifying and further explanation of the medical standard is needed.
  • Have medical reports returned to your office by DMV because of errors or omissions.

In January 2012 a new version of the California Medical Examination Report (DL 51) was printed. Items were added that are mandated by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR). Items added during the last revision were the driving type certification, medical examination effective dates, medical examiner license issue and expiration dates. Please call (916) 657-6550 to obtain a copy of the DL 51 Medical Examination Report form.

Information concerning the new Federal National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners is also in the new guide. Beginning May 21, 2014, all Medical Examiners who wish to conduct medical examinations for interstate commercial drivers must complete training about the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) physical qualifications regulations and advisory criteria and pass a certification test to be listed on the National Registry.

Medical Examiners who would like an electronic PDF version of the new Physician Guide for Commercial Driver License Medical Exams may email the DMV from a medical business email account. Email your requests to:, or for those who would prefer a paper version mailed, please call (916) 657-6550.