Missouri CDL License Requirements – Comprehensive Guide

| Last Updated: December 21, 2021

In Missouri, a trucking career requires that all commercial motor vehicle (CMV) operators obtain a CDL following the right channel.

And, like every other state in the US, Missouri has a set of rules for each type of license and requirements to meet before you can obtain a CDL.

The state also has strict penalties, including disqualification for drivers who violate CDL rules. This article outlines all CDL requirements in Missouri, including instances when a CDL may be disqualified.

How to Get a CDL in Missouri

Missouri CDL eligibility follows a set of rules that all applicants—US citizens or aliens must adhere to. Federal regulations on CDL application may vary slightly according to the laws of the state.

In Missouri, you must meet the minimum age requirement, proof of residence, get a medical certification, and meet any other state requirement before obtaining your CDL.

MO CDL Requirements

Here is an exhaustive breakdown of CDL requirements in Missouri.

1. Age

You must be at least 18 years old to drive within Missouri state lines (intrastate).

You must be at least 21 years old to drive a CMV across state lines (interstate) or drive vehicles transporting hazardous materials.

2. Medical Certification

All prospective CDL applicants must present medical certification after successful testing on vision, urinalysis, blood pressure, and hearing requirements.

You must also consent to alcohol testing or any chemical substance abuse as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require.

Note: Applicants under prescription drugs may be disqualified if the medical condition adversely affects their operation of a CMV.

3. Proof of Residence

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All applicants must have proof of legal status in Missouri and permission to work in the US. Your legitimate personal identification documents may include a Birth Certificate, a valid Social Security Number, or a Green Card for Non-US citizens.

4. Certifications and Licenses

You must first pass a set of written exams to obtain Missouri Commercial Learner’s Permit (CLP).

You must have only one driver’s license, and your driving privileges must not be revoked, suspended, or disqualified by Missouri or any other state in the US.

  • CDL applicants must be able to read and speak English properly.

How Much Does It Cost to Get a CDL in Missouri?

Different charges apply depending on the CDL validity period and whether you intend to get a CDL endorsement. Below is a breakdown of the usual CDL cost in Missouri.

  • Class A, B, and C instruction permit: $7.50
  • 3-year CDL: $22.50
  • 6-year CDL: $45.00
  • CDL endorsement applications will cost $10 and $2.50 to renew for people aged 70 and above with ‘S’ (school bus endorsement).

How Long Does It Take To Get a CDL in Missouri?

Getting a CDL in Missouri should take approximately seven weeks when attending a CDL training program full-time. However, that time may be as short as three weeks or over six months, depending on other factors discussed in this article.

Commercial License Types & Classes in Missouri

One must possess a Missouri CDL to operate any of the below vehicles.

Class A CDL

A Class A CDL applies to a combination of vehicles with a combined gross weight of or exceeding 26,001 pounds and towing vehicles with more than 10,000 pounds (gross weight). 

Drivers with Class A CDL plus any other appropriate endorsement can legally operate Class B, C, and D vehicles.

Class B CDL

A Class B CDL applies to any single or a combination of vehicles, where the combined gross weight of the single vehicles equals or exceeds 26,001 pounds, and the vehicles being towed must not exceed 10,000 pounds (gross weight). 

Drivers with Class B CDL can also operate all vehicles included in Class C and D.

Class C CDL

A Class C CDL is necessary to operate any single vehicle that doesn’t fall in the definition of Class A and B but is designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the CDL driver, or used in transporting materials marked as hazardous.

Missouri CDL Endorsements

CDL endorsements allow drivers to drive specialized vehicles that owning a CDL alone does not. 

A CDL endorsement is a great way to boost your earning potential. But first, you must take and pass an endorsement test you choose to pursue.

Below are the six Missouri CDL endorsements.

  • H endorsement – Hazardous Materials
  • N endorsement – Tanker Vehicles
  • P endorsement – Passenger Vehicles
  • S endorsement – School Bus Transport
  • T endorsement – Double and Triples
  • X endorsement – Tanker and Hazardous materials combination

What Makes Missouri a Great Place to Start a Truck Driving Career? 

Below are the top reasons why you should consider starting a trucking career in Missouri. 

Many Trucking Companies

Missouri offers many possibilities that make it one of the best states to start a truck driving career. The state has so many trucking companies that are always hiring competent drivers throughout the year. 

Multi-state Safe Parking Program

The state is well-positioned in the Midwest, which studies show is among the best locations for trucking. Midwest states recently came up with a multi-state truck parking program, which will give drivers real-time information on available safe parking. 

More Training Facilities

Missouri has up to 16 truck driving schools to choose from. These schools partner with trucking companies that offer internships and job placements to their successful students upon graduation.

Job Outlook and Salary For Truck Driving in Missouri

The trucking industry in the US will need to hire up to 1.1 million new drivers over the next ten years to keep up with the growing demand. The statistic is in line with the expected population that will retire over the same period.

The high demand for drivers in Missouri has also led to high remuneration and added benefits from companies, including retirement plans. Many cities in Missouri, such as Kansas, now pay truck drivers up to $70,842 per year. 

Common benefits that most trucking companies offer to drivers in Missouri include:

  • Life insurance
  • Fuel discount
  • Paid toll fees
  • Dental insurance
  • Health insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Vision insurance
  • Paid time off
  • Referral program

Additionally, truck drivers in Missouri have a high growth potential where the more experienced, the higher the pay. 

For instance, entry-level drivers can make an average salary of up to $62,882 per year. A seasoned driver with more than ten years of experience will earn up to $84,037 in Missouri.

Drivers can also advance their careers and increase their earning potential by taking endorsement courses.

The employment rate for heavy and tractor-trailer drivers is expected to grow by 6% between 2020 and 2030.

What is the Demand For Truck Drivers in Missouri?

The US relies on trucks to transport most of its freight. As the economy recovers from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s a significant increase in truck driving jobs in Missouri and the entire US.

More trucking companies are willing to employ fresh graduates with little to no experience. The demand is expected to grow steadily over the next decade.

How Much Do CDL Drivers Make in Missouri?

A truck driver’s salary in Missouri may vary according to skills, license type, and location (city). Also, different companies pay differently. However, a truck driver in Missouri will earn an average salary of $74,425 per year.

Conclusion 

Trucking is one of the most stable careers in the US today. Every year, the high demand for truck drivers makes it a career worth considering for people who want to earn immediately after graduation.

Missouri offers many growth possibilities, including trucking schools and companies and high average salaries of up to $74,425 per year.

However, one must be willing to adjust to a new lifestyle as a truck driver. You must be ready to spend many hours away from your family, which can feel lonely. Still, the remuneration is worth the sacrifice for those who meet the state’s CDL requirements.

People Also Ask

Missouri CDL application requirements vary slightly for residents and aliens. Still, federal regulations for all CMV operators are the same. Below we answer common questions about Missouri CDL.

Do Farmers Need a CDL in Missouri?

CDL requirements apply to all vehicles considered as CMVs. These include vehicles weighing 26,001 pounds and above, and also vehicles designed for carrying hazardous materials, or 16 passengers, including the driver.

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Farm vehicles used for transporting agricultural produce within 150 miles of the farm do not qualify to be CMV. Hence a farmer in Missouri does not require a CDL to operate such vehicles.

What Disqualifies You From Getting a CDL in Missouri?

You’ll be disqualified from getting a CDL in Missouri if you’re convicted for any of the below criminal offenses or CMV rules violations:

  • Serious traffic violations: These include erratic lane changes, over-speeding (exceeding by 15miles/hour), following the next vehicle too closely, among other offenses classified as severe by the Missouri transport department.
  • Out-of-service order: The order bars you from operating a CMV up to a specific duration of time until reinstated to service.
  • Rail-road crossing offenses: Rail-road crossing violation attracts disqualification for 60 days for the first offense and up to three years for a second or third violation.
  • Convictions: These include chemical test refusal, drunk driving, leaving an accident scene, using a revoked CDL, causing fatality due to negligence, and using a CMV to commit a felony.

Such offenses will attract a minimum one-year disqualification and up to three years for operators of vehicles transporting hazardous material. A second or third conviction leads to lifetime disqualification.

  • Implied consent: You’ll stay under out-of-service order for 24 hours and face possible criminal penalties for refusal to test for blood, urine, and breath for any chemical content.

How Much Does CDL School Cost in Missouri?

The cost of  CDL in Missouri may vary depending on the school you join. It ranges between $2,000 and $7,000.

Can You Get a CDL With a DUI in Missouri?

A DUI can remain in your driving record for up to 10 years. Although it WILL NOT  bar you from getting a CDL in Missouri, such blemishes in your driving record may prevent you from getting job offers from some employers.

Where Can You Find The Missouri CDL Practice Test?

The CDL skills test is open to the public at Missouri State Highway Patrol CDL Test Sites, but you must book an appointment first. You can complete a CDL written test at any Missouri State Highway Patrol Driver Examination Station.



After spending years on the road, I had a lot of time to think about the hardships that came with the trucking industry. I realized there was an opportunity to lend a hand a create a resource for truckers by truckers. With the help of my tech-savvy son, I built Trucker Geek as a way to show people that becoming a driver doesn’t need to be a stressful headache.