What is the penalty for driving a commercial vehicle without a CDL?

I’m a truck driver driving across the country, and I recently got pulled over only to find that I’ve misplaced my CDL! What is the fine for driving without a CDL?

Jessica Barrett · Updated on
Reviewed by Shannon Martin, Licensed Insurance Agent.
Oh no! Misplacing or flat-out losing your license can be a real headache. When it comes to a commercial driver’s license (or CDL, for short) the penalties for driving without it can be pretty steep—and a headache of its own.
Every state is different, as it will have its own fees and penalties. On a federal level, however, failure to have your CDL and applicable endorsements handy could result in at least a $2,500 fine and go up to $5,000 including possible jail time.
In addition, you may run the risk of your
license being suspended
for up to 90 days, leaving you with little to no income. It’s crucial that before you hit the road, you ensure that you have all important documents readily available so you’ll be prepared for any situation.
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