The trucking industry is the lifeblood of American commerce—it’s how goods and services crisscross the thousands of miles of interstates and highways connecting our cities. Commercial truck drivers play an incredibly important role in America’s economy, and can make a very comfortable living, which is one of the reasons it a very attractive occupation for many Americans. However, many otherwise qualified truckers have issues in obtaining employment and maximizing their earning potential due to criminal records that may haunt their past. According to HireRight, a company who runs many of the criminal background checks for the transportation industry, 64% of transportation companies run criminal background checks on their drivers.
Due to safety concerns, truckers and the transportation industry as a whole are subject to very tight state and federal regulations. While it is typically not terribly difficult to get a commercial drivers license with a criminal record (only a few driving-related offenses will disqualify you from obtaining a CDL), getting jobs, working with many desirable companies, and obtaining hazmat endorsements can often be problematic with a criminal record. Many commercial truckers who have experienced issues due to their criminal record are not aware that they may be eligible to expunge or seal criminal offenses from their record. While you can’t expunge or seal every crime, many states have recently expanded their laws to permit the expungement and sealing of many criminal offenses.
Obtaining Hazmat Endorsements With a Criminal Record
Having a criminal record that does not involve driving-related offenses will usually not prevent you from obtaining a commercial drivers license. However, many criminal offenses will prevent you from getting a hazmat endorsement without a cumbersome waiver process. Some crimes will prevent you from obtaining a hazmat endorsement for a seven-year period. These offenses include:
- Sale of a Controlled Substance
- Immigration Violations
- Weapons-Related Charges
- Aggravated Assault
Trucking Employment Opportunities with a Criminal Record
Obtaining employment with trucking companies and hauling cargo for many shippers can be much more difficult with a criminal record. Every company has different policies, and due to the large potential legal liability involved with commercial trucking, many companies have fairly strict policies with criminal records. If you are eligible to expunge or seal a criminal record, most state laws will typically remove your criminal record information from the reach of these companies, and also permit you to legally answer “no” when asked if you have been arrested or convicted of a criminal offense on a job application. If you have been living under the cloud of a criminal record, you know how valuable it can be to legally put a criminal conviction behind you. Even if you currently have a good job, or are independent and doing well at this point in your life, future opportunities can be unexpected, and having a criminal record can prevent you from taking advantage of lucrative career options that you would otherwise be qualified for.
Each state has different laws relating to expungement and record sealing, some of which can be quite complex to navigate without the assistance of an attorney experienced with the particular needs of truckers in these matters. This is why having an attorney experienced in working with truckers and others to guide you through the expungement process is so important. The first step in the process to see if you may qualify to have your criminal record expunged is to take our free, confidential Eligibility Test. If you would prefer to speak with one of our Attorneys or Criminal Records Analysts, please just give us a call toll free at (844) 947-3732.
You can trust that you will get exceptional service from WipeRecord, as we have an A Rating from the Better Business Bureau, and our attorneys are rated as Super Lawyers and rated as Superb Attorneys by prestigious attorney rating services, such as Thompson Reuters and Avvo. Our law firm has attorneys licensed to practice law in ten states (soon to be many more), provides low price guarantees, and is here to fight for you!