FMCSA eyes electronic records, e-signature option

Updated Apr 29, 2014

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is considering allowing carriers and drivers the option of using electronic records and signatures to meet regulatory requirements.

Under the proposal, the industry would have a choice of using electronic or traditional paper-based methods. This would only apply to documents the FMCSA requires individuals or companies to retain, but excludes documents that must be submitted directly to FMCSA.

This proposed rule responds to President Barack Obama’s 2011 Regulatory Review and Reform initiative and would implement other recent federal laws to decrease paperwork and allow electronic signatures.

FMCSA also would remove references to “original” documents because there is no true distinction between originals and copies of electronic documents. Parties could maintain accurate copies instead of originals. Regulatory language would be amended to be technologically neutral, with “written or in writing” being defined as traditional record keeping as well as electronic.

The public will have 60 days to comment on the NPRM and all submissions must be identified by its docket number, FMCSA-2012-0376. Visit to comment.