How To Read A Driving Record Report

Every state issues drivers’ licenses and retains driving records that document status, violations and other information. These records can be requested by insurance companies, employers and potential employers (to verify information and measure employability). The reports can contain extensive information, and it is important to understand its content.

Driving Report Basics

While report layouts vary by state, it should minimally include:

General. Name, address and driver’s license number.

Type of license. Licenses are classified by type of vehicle such as personal, motorcycle, commercial and others.

Status. This can include active, restricted or revoked. In states with limitations for teen drivers, this will be noted, if applicable.

Key dates. Date issued or expired (if not renewed).

Driving record. This documents violations — such as speeding, failure to stop, accident with injuries, DUI and fatality. Resolutions of the violations are also recorded and can include guilty, guilty plea to a reduced charge or dismissal.

Points. Most states use a points system that can lead to a license being revoked. Many points expire if no additional violations occur within a specified period of time, which can leave most drivers with few or no points. Serious violations incur high point values and may have a longer active period before expiring.

Type of report. Reports are either certified or non-certified. Certified reports are required if they will be presented as evidence in civil or criminal proceedings.

Report Variants

Many states have additional DMV driving record information, but you may have to read between the lines or understand nuances of a particular state’s system to comprehend the full impact of some information.

Driving courses. Some states allow drivers with minor violations to take a class or defensive driving course to expunge violations from their record. The violations will not be listed on the driving report, but the courses will. A person whose driving record consists of a series of courses is someone who has had multiple violations.

Types of driving record reports. Most states simply offer certified or non-certified reports, but some provide many levels of reports. For example, Texas has six types of certified and non-certified reports. A status report contains only the driver’s name, birthdate, last known address and license status. Some states also offer certified and non-certified three-year histories and full histories, as well as a certified driving abstract.

Who Should Request Driving Records?

The driver. Given the various uses of these documents, it is important to check your driving record to ensure its accuracy.

Employers of commercial drivers. These employers, especially transportation and logistics employers must verify that the potential employee’s self-reported information is accurate — including name, license number and driving record — to avoid hiring mistakes.

All other employers/potential employers. Driving record verification is vital to evaluate the veracity of potential employees and identify unanticipated problems, such as a history of DUIs. To avoid potential liability, it is also important to check driving records if the employee is expected to drive clients, other employees or occasionally deliver products.

Global Verification Network provides certified driving records, background checks, education verifications and other critical information needed to evaluate current and potential employees. Our certified staff offers discreet, timely services to meet your needs. Visit our website, send an email or call us at (877) 695-1170 to learn more or request a free quote.


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