If you’ve ever looked up the phrase “motor vehicle record” (MVR) on the internet, you know that there are a multitude of results that pop up. As with many things in life, the more options you have put in front of you to decipher as viable information, the more convoluted and disjointed said information seems to become.

Maybe you’re better looking to understand MVR records for employers and how they can assist in keeping your employees safer, or an employee looking to understand the insight that your company has into your driver behavior. No matter where you fall, you’re in luck, as we have all the info you need.

We at SambaSafety consider ourselves MVR experts. For over 20 years, we’ve been and remain the industry leader in driver risk management, having collected data from over 658 million MVRs. We average 40 million MVRs per year, no small feat.

It makes sense then, with our expertise, that we receive inquiries numerous times a day from companies looking to learn more about telling MVR information. Here are some of the common questions we hear around MVRs:

  • What is an MVR?
  • What’s on an MVR?
  • How far back do MVR reports go?
  • Can I pull my own MVR?
  • What make’s SambaSafety’s MVRs different?

Let’s start from the beginning.

What is an MVR?

Otherwise known as a driving record, an MVR features documented incidents and violations that have occurred. The way in which violations are referenced can vary state-by-state, as well as the length in which a violation stays on your MVR. On an MVR, you’ll only see negative things that have occurred while behind the wheel.

What’s on an MVR?

While we wish we could all leave our weight or age off of our MVR, unfortunately, that is one item that is listed. With that personal information comes additional details on your license class, any endorsements you may have as well as restrictions that are pertinent in precautions you should take when operating a vehicle.

Additionally, on an MVR, you can gain insight negative violations incurred, whether you’re aware of them or not. You can see everything from accident reports, traffic citations, DUI convictions, vehicular crimes and driving record points.

But did you know that oftentimes, there are things that you may fall through the cracks that are reflected on your MVR, you’re not alerted to and, in turn, can put your license status at risk? Falling behind or being delinquent on child support as well as seemingly small mishaps like not paying your parking ticket(s) on time can put your license status in jeopardy.

How Far Back Do Reports Go?

We’re glad you asked, as this is a bit tricky. The timeframe in which MVRs look back varies by state and typically falls within a three-to-seven-year lookback period, with three years being the most common. States vary their lookback timeframe due to the lack of standardized national database. Instead, MVRs are reported through state-specific Department of Motor Vehicles (DMVs) or the equivalent.

Can I Pull My Own MVR?

The short answer is yes, you can, but through your state’s DMV. The longer answer? Since MVRs are consumer reports, the businesses (like DMVs) that supply them must align with regulations put forth by the Fair Credit Reporting Act, otherwise known as the FCRA.

With that being said, you’re often at the mercy of the DMV, making receiving a DMV-supplied MVR often erratic. In some states, you can see the report immediately online, while in others, you must visit the DMV or mail a form in.

What Makes SambaSafety’s MVRs Different?

Our MVRs allow businesses who use them to skip the clunky nature associated with traditional MVRs. As an FCRA-certified SaaS company, we work with each state’s DMVs to ensure the safekeeping of personal information.

Due to those relationships, we are also able to standardize, or create one language, of the violations found on MVRs despite coming from different states. This bypasses the hassle that MVRs from different states typically bring and translates those violations, dismantling the inconsistency typically encountered.

Additionally, thanks to those relationships with DMVs, we can keep track of changes to MVR information as well as the various state and federal regulations, ensuring only the most accurate report will be passed along. Our MVRs are unique for a reason – we can also save companies money by circumventing the need for headaches like duplicative or even unnecessary ordering.

You’ve Got the MVR Basics Down – Now What?

Now you know the basics and see the value in MVRs, you may be asking yourself – “what do I do next and how can I make this information actionable?” You’re in luck as we have just the answer.

Begin understanding the risk that your drivers present. MVR records for employers and the information they bring are part of the essential first steps in developing a comprehensive driver risk management strategy you can easily implement.

To see how your company fares and whether you’re already implementing components every strategy should have, download our Driver Risk Management Checklist.

If you enjoyed this article, we recommend the following:

You Aren’t Doing Enough If You’re Relying on Pre-Employment MVR Checks
The Benefits of Combining MVR Monitoring and Driver Safety Training
How Monitoring Violations Can Reduce Distracted Driving in Your Fleet
Why Your Company Needs a Better Driver Risk Management Solution