Charter Bus Endorsement (C) Driver Services
The Secretary of State's office issues and renews Charter Bus Endorsements, monitors the records of Charter Bus Endorsement holders, and direct entry of driving history data related to a Charter Bus Endorsement. Any person who drives a bus, other than a school bus, chartered by a school for the sole purpose of transporting students' grade 12 or below to or from any school-sponsored activity must apply for a Charter Bus Endorsement.
All new applicants applying for the Charter Bus Endorsement must meet the following requirements and work in conjunction with a prospective employer to complete the process:
- Be age 21 or older.
- Possess a valid and properly classified Commercial Driver's License (CDL) issued by the Secretary of State.
- Submit to and successfully pass an Illinois-specific criminal background check through an approved vendor.
- Complete a medical examination, including chemical testing for drugs. A current DOT medical certificate is acceptable.
- Complete the applicant section of the Secretary of State Charter Bus Application (Employer also has a section to complete).
- Submit an original completed Secretary of State Charter Bus Application to facility personnel, when applying for the endorsement and taking the written test.
- Successfully pass the written Charter Bus Endorsement exam administered by the Secretary of State.
- Successfully pass a skills/drive test, if applicable, in a representative vehicle of the class of the driver's license for Passenger and Charter Bus Endorsements.
- Affirm under penalty of perjury that you have not made a false statement or knowingly concealed a material fact in any application for a Charter Bus Endorsement.
- Not have been repeatedly involved as a driver in motor vehicle accidents or repeatedly convicted of offenses, that indicate disrespect for traffic laws.
If the applicant/driver already holds an Illinois class B CDL with a Passenger endorsement, then the skills/drive test is NOT required.
If the applicant/driver already holds an Illinois class B CDL with a Passenger endorsement, a School Bus endorsement and a class B School Bus Permit, then the Charter Bus Endorsement is NOT required.
When renewing a CDL with a C endorsement, the driver must present a new completed Charter Bus Application during the renewal process to maintain the endorsement.
- Employers must request a seven-digit employer assigned number by faxing the request on company letterhead indicating a contact person and phone/fax number to 217-524-3654. If an employer was previously issued a seven-digit number because of school bus permit legislation, the same employer number will be used for obtaining a Charter Bus Endorsement.
- Prospective employers must schedule an appointment for the employee to be fingerprinted through an Illinois State Police-approved vendor.
- The employer completes the applicable section(s) of the Charter Bus Application and provides the form to the employee.
- If an employer is participating in the Third Party Certification Program, the employer will conduct the behind-the-wheel examination of the applicant.
- Employers must notify the Secretary of State's office in writing of the employment or termination of a driver who has a Charter Bus Endorsement by using the Employer Notification Report.
- Employers must notify the Secretary of State's office within one business day whenever a charter bus used to transport students grade 12 or below to and from school functions is involved in an accident where the driver was required to submit to the post-accident testing requirements as set forth in 49 C.F.R.382.303. To make this notification, please use the Employer Notification Report.
- Employers must maintain records of all certifications and verifications on the company premises and must be available for immediate inspection by the Secretary of State's office.
Illinois Compiled Statutes
- 105 ILCS 5/10 - 20.21a — Contracts for charter bus services
- 625 ILCS 5/6 - 104 — Classification of Driver-Special Restrictions
- 625 ILCS 5/6 - 508 — Commercial Driver's License (CDL) qualification standards
For more information, please email or call the Safe Ride section at 217-782-7674.