Can a Felon Get a Hazmat Endorsement?

If you or someone you love has just been released from prison and has been hit with an immediate feeling of needing to find a job, I am here to help.

It is extremely difficult to gain some momentum after a person has just been released from prison. You basically walk out with a big sticker on your forehead that says I am a convicted felon. However there are certain jobs and places that will gladly hire felons and help them gain that momentum they are looking for.

Truck driving is an excellent source of income and is a relatively easy job to start right away as long as you have a CDL (commercial driver license) and a hazmat endorsement. The hazmat endorsement was put in place after the 9/11 attacks. It is a requirement that was put in place to ensure safety when transporting hazardous material, we will get into more detail about this later.

Can a Felon Get a Hazmat Endorsement

So can you get a hazmat endorsement if you are a felon? Can you even get a CDL if you are a felon? Well, we will go into detail about that later and the answer varies depending on the type of felony you were charged with.

I understand the frustration a felon feels when trying to find a job. Especially because people can be so quick to judge. With some exceptions, a felony does not accurately describe the person who receives it.

If you are looking at this article as an employer and more specifically a truck driving employer, I encourage you to learn about all of the regulations for hiring a felon. I would also encourage you to get out there and recruit felons looking to be hired. Help them to change their life for the better.

If you are a felon looking for a job that does not involve truck driving, check out This is a great database for felons looking to find information about perspective jobs.

The Steps to Getting the Hazmat Endorsement

Can a Felon Get a Hazmat Endorsement Step

Getting a hazmat endorsement is a bit tricky, but it is tricky for anyone, not just felons. First things first you need to be of age.

Basic Requirements

If a prospective employee wants to get a hazmat endorsement it is required that the applicant is at least 21 years old, which is a completely logical rule. The applicant must be a citizen or a permanent resident of the United States of America to apply for the hazmat endorsement.

An applicant must also pass a DOT physical. All of these basic requirements are very simple steps to achieve and are inclusive of felons and non felons.

Another requirement for applicants is that the applicant must possess a CDL.


Getting a CDL is not an easy task for anyone. To get a CDL an applicant has to apply and complete a training course. During the course the applicant will have to take a written test and of course a road test. It is required that the applicant passes both tests in order to obtain a CDL.

Before an applicant can take the training course it is required that the applicant has a driving record background check. This is a standard check that every prospective employee must go through.

There are a few instances where a felon will not be qualified to obtain CDL and therefore will not be able to obtain a hazmat endorsement. The instances are as followed:

If a felon was convicted within the past 7 years or released from prison in the last 5 years from any of the following crimes.

  1. Vehicular manslaughter (a felony conviction)
  2. Illegal trafficking of a controlled substance, weapon(s) or materials
  3. Illegal distribution of a controlled substance, weapon(s) or materials

There are other felonies that could prevent a person from obtaining a CDL but it varies for each driving school.

Below is a list of convictions that would possibly disqualify a felon from obtaining a CDL.

  1. Extortion
  2. Arson
  3. Treason
  4. Kidnapping
  5. Assualt with intent to murder
  6. Bribery

Before a prospective employee looks to be admitted into CDL training it is important that he or she looks up the standards and qualifications for the driving schools in the state in which they reside.

A driving school in Arizona may not accept an admission from a felon who was convicted of bribery but a school in California might.

If you or someone you love is trying to find out more information about getting a CDL as a felon consider checking out The researcher can even look up an exact article for “Can a Felon Get a CDL?”. This website holds plenty of informative articles specifically for felons.

What is a Hazmat Endorsement?

Can a Felon Get a Hazmat Endorsement What

I mentioned earlier that a hazmat endorsement is an endorsement that a truck driver must possess. It became a law after the 9/11 attacks. The hazmat endorsement ensures employers that a prospective employee is able to safely transport hazardous materials.

What About the Background Check?

This might be terrifying for a felon applying for any type of job. Any job will ask for a background check whether the applicant is a felon or a non felon.

The background check is sent to the TSA along with the applicants fingerprints.There they will check for any disqualifying felonies, keep reading to find out what those felonies are.

If a disqualifying felony is found unfortunately the applicant will fail his or her background check. However, if an applicant fails their background check for a hazmat endorsement they can still keep their CDL and it will not be revoked.

What Felonies Would Prevent Someone From Getting a Hazmat Endorsement?

A felon may feel discouraged and they may think there is no hope for their new life in society outside of prison but they should not give up as there are plenty of possibilities.

A felon can get a hazmat endorsement if they are qualified to. There are a few reasons why a felon would not be able to apply for a hazmat endorsement. It is important that the felon does all the research they can before applying to something they will be disqualified from.

I am here to make the research easier and I have laid out all of the reasons why a felon would not be qualified to apply for a hazmat endorsement.

A felon will never receive a hazmat endorsement if he/she has committed any of the following crimes.

  1. Terrorism
  2. Murder
  3. Illegal handling of explosives
  4. Unlawful use, purchase or dealing an explosive
  5. Treason
  6. Espionage
  7. Sedition
  8. Transportation security incident
  9. Improper transportation of hazardous material
  10. Conspiracy or attempt to commit any of the above crimes

The following crimes will restrict a person from getting a hazmat endorsement as well. However, if a person is guilty of these crimes they will have a chance to appeal and therefore have the restriction waived.

  1. Assault
  2. Weapons Violation
  3. Distributing drugs

A more detailed list of crimes can be obtained after consulting with the state and the TSA in which the felon resides.

The following crimes will restrict a felon from obtaining a hazmat endorsement if, it has been less than 7 years since the crime was committed on the date of the application or if it has been less than 5 years since the felons release from prison from the following crimes

  1. Dishonesty, fraud or misrepresentation
  2. Smuggling
  3. Bribery
  4. Immigration violations
  5. Arson
  6. Rape
  7. Fraudulent entry into a seaport
  8. Robbery

Can a Felon Get a Hazmat Endorsement?

The quick answer is yes it is possible that a felon can get a hazmat endorsement. Unfortunately depending on the felony committed an applicant may be disqualified.

It is very important that the felon is completely honest about any type of information presented. Failure to do so may get them in trouble.

Luckily there is an appeals program that disqualified felons can apply for. If a felon fails his or her background check they have 60 days to appeal.

If the results of the appeal are positive the felon can reapply for a hazmat endorsement.The decision is made by the TSA and the TSA only.

How to Show Support to a Felon Looking to Get a Hazmat Endorsement?

The loved one must always keep in mind the felon is struggling to make ends meet. It is important that the loved one shows support and understanding. It can be very difficult for the felon to get back on his or her feet.

If the felon unfortunately will never qualify for being able to obtain a hazmat endorsement check out There are plenty of other opportunities for felons and some might even be the perfect fit for them.

The felon must be reminded that he or she should keep their head up and if they are persistent in changing their life around it will happen for them.

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