What is a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR)?

Aug 24, 2022

What is a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR)?

In the simplest of terms, a Motor Vehicle Report (MVR) is a report of one’s driving record which is compiled by a state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.  An MVR contains moving violations, traffic infractions and accidents.  It can be reported for a specific time period or include the duration of one’s driving history.

What is an MVR check?

An MVR check is done when an applicant is required to operate a company vehicle for the position for which they are applying.  In this case an employer is required to comply with federal regulations as set by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT).  When an employee is required to drive as part of the job, it is imperative that compliance standards and regulations are followed to maintain safety on the highways and byways.  As employers can be held accountable for the actions of their employees who operate vehicles for them, it behooves them to conduct MVR checks in order to minimize risk and avoid fees and fines.  

What information is included on a MVR?

In addition to identifying information, such as name, date of birth and driver’s license number, an MVR will include any motor vehicle events such as moving violations and citations, accidents, as well as DUI convictions and suspensions or revocations or one’s driver’s license.  

How long do violations remain on your driving record?

The short answer to this question is, it depends.  For minor infractions such as speeding tickets, they tend to drop off of one’s record fairly quickly, frequently within three to five years.  A more serious incident, like an at-fault accident or a DUI conviction, remains on one’s record for much longer.  Ultimately, the length of time any traffic violation remains on a driving record is determined by individual states and thus varies by location.  

What’s a standard vs. lifetime driving record?

Depending on the state, an MVR may include two sections; a standard driving record and a lifetime driving record.  A standard driving record includes recent violations, however, the definition of the term ‘recent’ is not consistent across states.  That stated, typically, standard driving record reports include infractions from the previous five to ten years.  A lifetime driving record includes every infraction over one’s lifetime; however,  not all states retain lifetime driving records.

Why are MVRs important?

In addition to being a requirement for some positions, MVRs allow an employer to gain detailed information on whether an applicant is likely to adhere to safety regulations while operating a vehicle as part of the job.  Also, as employers are required to check MVRs periodically for certain positions, MVRs help to ensure a driver continues to be a safe and compliant driver after they have been hired.  Employers who maintain employees who are safe drivers, can potentially avoid increases in insurance rates as a result.

If you have questions about the Motor Vehicle Report process or are looking for a company to streamline your employee screening process, contact us today.

Visit our services to learn more about Department of Transportation background screening services.

Need a background check right away?

We’re here to help

Not sure which service is right for you?