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Tennessee extends deadlines, expiration dates at state driver centers

Staff Report • Updated Mar 25, 2020 at 3:42 PM

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security is extending deadlines and expiration dates at its state driver services centers in light of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

If they’re set to expire between March 12 and May 18, the state will be extending the expiration dates of commercial drivers licenses and commercial driving permits until June 30. All non-CDL licenses will expire six months from the date the license is set to expire. This doesn’t apply to individuals with Class X licenses.

Tennessee will also be suspending non-CDL knowledge and skills tests until May 18 and will temporarily suspend the issuance of REAL ID credentials from Wednesday through May 18. The requirement that new Tennessee residents obtain a Tennessee driver license within 30 days of becoming a resident has been extended to June 17, 2020.

The state will also allow Med-Cert extension for CDL holders with a medical card expiring between March 12, 2020 and May 18, 2020. CDL holders have until June 30, 2020 to submit their new Med-Cert to the Department. The extension is available to CDL holders with a medical card that is currently valid for more than 90 days.

Driver services centers will still be able to process new and returning residents, photo identification licenses (including voter identification credentials), reinstatements, handgun carry permits, CDL knowledge and skills tests and process renewal and duplicate transactions for non U.S. citizens with legal presence.

“These services are subject to change due to staffing availability,” the department said in a press release on Wednesday. “Please check the department’s website for daily updates for centers that may be closed due to staffing availability.”

The department is also taking precautions for the health and safety of its employees and customers. These include:

  • Adopting Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for cleaning and sanitizing all driver services centers and equipment.
  • Providing guidance to our personnel regarding precautions to minimize risk of exposure for themselves and customers.
  • Stationing a staff member at the entrance of each driver services center to ensure the number of customers entering the center does not exceed CDC recommendations.
  • Encouraging and allowing customers to wait in their vehicles using the department’s queuing technology (E-Ticketing) until notified by text or call to enter the driver services center.
  • Providing protective gear for examiners who interact with customers following TSA procedures.
  • Encouraging customers to use credit or debit cards only to limit handling of cash.

“We ask that customers who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms (coughing, fever, shortness of breath), have had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19, or have traveled to a high-risk area for COVID-19, please consider the health and safety of our employees and other customers and visit a center at another time,” the department said in the release.

The department strongly encourages citizens to use its e-Services portal for available online services such as renewals, duplicates, paying reinstatement fees and changing address to avoid visiting a driver services center. A full list of available transactions can be found here.

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