Part 1 General Provisions 55-50-101 – 55-50-102
Part 2 Administration by Department 55-50-201 – 55-50-205
Part 3 Application, Examination, and Issuance 55-50-301 – 55-50-354
Part 4 Commercial Driver Licenses 55-50-401 – 55-50-413
Part 5 Suspension and Revocation 55-50-501 – 55-50-512
Part 6 Penalties 55-50-601 – 55-50-604
Part 7 Reciprocity Agreements 55-50-701 – 55-50-705
Part 8 Deposit of License in Lieu of Bail 55-50-801 – 55-50-805

Terms Used In Tennessee Code > Title 55 > Chapter 50

  • Acquittal:
    1. Judgement that a criminal defendant has not been proved guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
    2. A verdict of "not guilty."
     
  • Administrator: means the federal motor carrier safety administrator, the chief executive of the federal motor carrier safety administration, an agency within the United States department of transportation. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • ADS: means technology installed on a motor vehicle that has the capability to drive the vehicle on which the technology is installed in high or full automation mode, without any supervision by a human operator, with specific driving mode performance by the automated driving system of all aspects of the dynamic driving task that can be managed by a human driver, including the ability to automatically bring the motor vehicle into a minimal risk condition in the event of a critical vehicle or system failure or other emergency event. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
  • ADS-operated vehicle: means a vehicle equipped with an automated driving system. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
  • Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
  • Alcohol abuse: means a condition characterized by the continuous or episodic use of alcohol resulting in social impairment, vocational impairment, psychological dependence or pathological patterns of use. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
  • Alcohol dependence: means alcohol abuse that results in the development of tolerance or manifestations of alcohol abstinence syndrome upon cessation of use. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
  • Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
  • Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
  • Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
  • Arraignment: A proceeding in which an individual who is accused of committing a crime is brought into court, told of the charges, and asked to plead guilty or not guilty.
  • Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
  • Asset forfeiture: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
  • Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
  • Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
  • Autocycle: means the same as defined in §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • Bail: Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
  • Bicycle: means every device propelled by human power upon which any person may ride, having two (2) tandem wheels, either of which is more than twenty inches (20?) in diameter. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
  • bond: means any cash or other security deposited to secure an appearance for trial, following a citation by an arresting officer for violation of a traffic law, ordinance, rules or regulation. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
  • Bus: means every motor vehicle designed for carrying more than fifteen (15) passengers including the driver and operated for the transportation of persons. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • Certified driving instructor: means any person who gives driver training or who offers a course in driver training, and who is certified as a certified driving instructor by the department. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • Chauffeur: means every person who is employed for the principal purpose of operating a motor vehicle and every person who drives a motor vehicle while in use as a public or common carrier of persons or property. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • Chief: means the chief of the highway patrol. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
  • Child: means a person who is under eighteen (18) years of age. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
  • Citation: means any citation, summons, ticket, or other document issued by an arresting officer for violation of a traffic law, ordinance, rule, or regulation, ordering the arrested motorist to appear in court or before a magistrate. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
  • Code: includes the Tennessee Code and all amendments and revisions to the code and all additions and supplements to the code. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
  • Commerce: means :

    • (A) Trade, traffic, and transportation within the jurisdiction of the United States. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102

    • Commercial driver certificate: means a document issued by the department that authorizes a driver to operate a class of motor vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
    • Commercial driver license: means a license issued by the department in accordance with the standards contained in 49 CFR part 383 to an individual that authorizes the individual to operate a class of commercial motor vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
    • Commercial motor vehicle: means a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used in commerce to transport passengers or property if the motor vehicle:

      • (i) Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of twenty-six thousand one (26,001) or more pounds. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102

      • Commissioner: means the commissioner of safety. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
      • Commissioner: means the commissioner of mental health and substance abuse services when the statute at issue relates to mental illness or serious emotional disturbance and means the commissioner of intellectual and developmental disabilities when the statute at issue relates to intellectual and developmental disabilities. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Commissioner: means the commissioner of safety. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
      • Controlled substance: means any substance so classified under § 102(6) of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Conviction: means an unvacated adjudication of guilt, or a determination that a person has violated or failed to comply with the law in a court of original jurisdiction or by an authorized administrative tribunal, an unvacated forfeiture of bail or collateral deposited to secure the person's appearance in court, a plea of guilty or nolo contendere accepted by the court, the payment of a fine or court cost, or violation of a condition of release without bail, regardless of whether or not the penalty is rebated, suspended or probated. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
      • Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
      • Decedent: A deceased person.
      • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
      • Department: means department of safety. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
      • Department: means the department of mental health and substance abuse services when the statute at issue deals with mental illness or serious emotional disturbance and means the department of intellectual and developmental disabilities when the statute at issue deals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Department: means the department of safety acting directly or through its duly authorized officers and agents. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Developmental center: means a department of intellectual and developmental disabilities facility or part of it that provides residential and habilitation services to persons with intellectual disabilities. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Dismissal: The dropping of a case by the judge without further consideration or hearing. Source:
      • Domicile: means a person's fixed, permanent and principal home for legal purposes and to which the person has the intention of returning whenever the person is absent. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Donor: The person who makes a gift.
      • Driver: means every person who drives or is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle upon a highway or who is exercising control over or steering a vehicle being towed by a motor vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Driver license: means a license issued by the department to an individual that authorizes the individual to operate a motor vehicle on the highways. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Drug abuse: means a condition characterized by the continuous or episodic use of a drug or drugs resulting in social impairment, vocational impairment, psychological dependence or pathological patterns of use. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Drug dependence: means drug abuse that results in the development of tolerance or manifestations of drug abstinence syndrome upon cessation of use. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Employee: means an operator of a commercial motor vehicle, including an owner-operator or other independent contractor while in the course of operating a commercial motor vehicle, who is employed by an employer. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Employer: means any person, including the United States, a state, or a political subdivision of a state, who owns or leases a commercial motor vehicle or assigns employees to operate such a vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
      • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
      • Executor: includes an administrator, where the subject matter applies to an administrator. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
      • Farm tractor: means every motor vehicle designed and used primarily as a farm implement for drawing plows, mowing machines and other implements of husbandry. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
      • Felony: means any offense under state or federal law that is punishable by death or imprisonment for a term exceeding one (1) year. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
      • Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
      • Full legal name: means an individual's first name, middle name or names and last name or surname, without use of initials or nicknames. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Gift: A voluntary transfer or conveyance of property without consideration, or for less than full and adequate consideration based on fair market value.
      • Grand jury: agreement providing that a lender will delay exercising its rights (in the case of a mortgage,
      • Gross weight: means the weight of a vehicle without load plus the weight of any load thereon. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
      • Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
      • Hazardous materials: means any material that has been designated as hazardous under 49 U. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Highway: means the entire width between the boundary lines of every way publicly maintained that is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel, or the premises of any shopping center, trailer park or apartment house complex or any other premises frequented by the public at large. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Hospital: means a public or private hospital or facility or part of a hospital or facility equipped to provide inpatient care and treatment for persons with mental illness or serious emotional disturbance. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Implement of husbandry: means every vehicle that is designed for agricultural purposes and exclusively used by the owner thereof in the conduct of the owner's agricultural operations. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
      • Indictment: The formal charge issued by a grand jury stating that there is enough evidence that the defendant committed the crime to justify having a trial; it is used primarily for felonies.
      • Intellectual disability: means , for the purposes of the general functions of the department as set forth in §. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
      • Interrogatories: Written questions asked by one party of an opposing party, who must answer them in writing under oath; a discovery device in a lawsuit.
      • Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
      • Lawful permanent resident: means the status of having been lawfully accorded the privilege of residing permanently in the United States as an immigrant in accordance with the immigration laws, such status not having changed. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
      • Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
      • License: means any operator's or chauffeur's permit or any other license or permit to operate a motor vehicle issued under the laws of a reciprocating state including:

        • (A) Any temporary or learner's permit. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701

        • Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
        • Low speed vehicle: means any four-wheeled electric vehicle whose top speed is greater than twenty miles per hour (20 mph) but not greater than twenty-five miles per hour (25 mph), including neighborhood vehicles. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Manufacturer: means every person engaged in the business of constructing or assembling vehicles of a type required to be registered at an established place of business in this state. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Medical capability: means that a state-owned or operated hospital or treatment resource has the ability to treat an individual's medical needs onsite or that the individual's medical needs do not exceed the onsite capability of the state-owned or operated hospital or treatment resource to treat. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
        • Medium speed vehicle: means any four-wheeled electric vehicle whose top speed is greater than thirty miles per hour (30 mph), but whose maximum speed allowed is thirty-five miles per hour (35 mph) only on streets with a forty mile per hour (40 mph) or less posted speed limit pursuant to §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Mental illness: means a psychiatric disorder, alcohol dependence, or drug dependence, but does not include intellectual disability or other developmental disabilities. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
        • Minor: means any person who has not attained eighteen (18) years of age. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Misdemeanor: Usually a petty offense, a less serious crime than a felony, punishable by less than a year of confinement.
        • Month: means a calendar month. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Mortgagor: The person who pledges property to a creditor as collateral for a loan and who receives the money.
        • Motor driven cycle: means "motor driven cycle" as defined in §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Motor vehicle: means a vehicle, low speed vehicle or medium speed vehicle as defined in this section, machine, tractor, trailer or semitrailer propelled or drawn by mechanical power used on highways or any other vehicle required to be registered under the laws of this state, but does not include any vehicle, machine, tractor, trailer or semitrailer operated exclusively on a rail. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Motor-driven cycle: means every motorcycle, including every motor scooter, with a motor that produces no more than five (5) brake horsepower, or with a motor with a cylinder capacity not exceeding one hundred twenty-five cubic centimeters (125cc). See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Motorcycle: means "motorcycle" as defined in §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Motorized bicycle: means "motorized bicycle" as defined in §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Nolo contendere: No contest-has the same effect as a plea of guilty, as far as the criminal sentence is concerned, but may not be considered as an admission of guilt for any other purpose.
        • Nonresident: means every person who is not a resident of the state. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Oath: includes affirmation. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
        • Operator: means every person, other than a chauffeur, who drives or is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle upon a highway or who is exercising control over or steering a vehicle being towed by a motor vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Oversight: Committee review of the activities of a Federal agency or program.
        • Owner: means a person who holds the legal title of a vehicle or in the event a vehicle is the subject of an agreement for the conditional sale or lease thereof with the right of purchase upon performance of the conditions stated in the agreement and with an immediate right of possession vested in the conditional vendee or lessee, or in the event a mortgagor of a vehicle is entitled to possession, then the conditional vendee or lessee or mortgagor shall be deemed the owner for the purposes of this chapter. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Pedestrian: means any person afoot or using a motorized or non-motorized wheelchair. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Person: includes a corporation, firm, company or association. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Person: includes either man or woman, single or married. See Tennessee Code 32-1-101
        • Person: means every natural person, firm, copartnership, association or corporation. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Personal recognizance: means a signed agreement by an arrested motorist that the motorist will comply with the terms of the citation served upon the motorist at the time of arrest. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
        • Personal representative: when applied to those who represent a decedent, includes executors and administrators, unless the context implies heirs and distributees. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Plea: In a criminal case, the defendant's statement pleading "guilty" or "not guilty" in answer to the charges, a declaration made in open court.
        • Pleadings: Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In the federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.
        • Police officer: means every officer authorized to direct or regulate traffic or to make arrests for violations of traffic regulations. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Precedent: A court decision in an earlier case with facts and law similar to a dispute currently before a court. Precedent will ordinarily govern the decision of a later similar case, unless a party can show that it was wrongly decided or that it differed in some significant way.
        • Probate: Proving a will
        • Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
        • Property: includes both personal and real property. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Public law: A public bill or joint resolution that has passed both chambers and been enacted into law. Public laws have general applicability nationwide.
        • Railroad: means a carrier of persons or property upon cars, other than streetcars, operated upon stationary rails. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Reciprocating state: means any state that extends by its laws or by written agreement with this state to residents of this state substantially the rights and privileges provided by this part. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
        • Record: means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in a perceivable form. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Representative: when applied to those who represent a decedent, includes executors and administrators, unless the context implies heirs and distributees. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • Resident: means every person that lives in this state for a period of time exceeding thirty (30) days, has taken employment, or who would qualify as a registered voter, or has taken action to establish Tennessee as principal place of domicile. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Responsible relative: means the parent of an unemancipated child with mental illness, serious emotional disturbance, alcohol dependence, drug dependence, or developmental disabilities who is receiving service in programs of the department or any relative who accepts financial responsibility for the care and service of a service recipient. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
        • Road: includes public bridges and may be held equivalent to the words "county way" "county road" or "state road". See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • School bus: means every motor vehicle operated for the transportation of children to or from school or school-related activities and is operated for compensation. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Secretary: means the secretary of transportation of the United States. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
        • Semitrailer: means every vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle and so constructed that some part of its weight and that of its load rests upon or is carried by another vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
        • Serious emotional disturbance: means a condition in a child who currently or at any time during the past year has had a diagnosable mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder of sufficient duration to meet psychiatric diagnostic criteria that results in functional impairment that substantially interferes with or limits the child's role or functioning in family, school, or community activities and includes any mental disorder, regardless of whether it is of biological etiology. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
        • Service recipient: means a person who is receiving service, has applied for service, or for whom someone has applied for or proposed service because the person has mental illness, serious emotional disturbance, or a developmental disability. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
        • signed: includes a mark, the name being written near the mark and witnessed, or any other symbol or methodology executed or adopted by a party with intention to authenticate a writing or record, regardless of being witnessed. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • State: when applied to the different parts of the United States, includes the District of Columbia and the several territories of the United States. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
        • State: means the state of Tennessee. See Tennessee Code 55-50-701
        • State: means :

          • (A) For the purposes of commercial driver licenses, a state of the United States and the District of Columbia. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102

          • Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
          • Street: means the entire width between boundary lines of every way when any part thereof is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular travel. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
          • Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
          • Summons: Another word for subpoena used by the criminal justice system.
          • Support: means any activity or resource that enables a service recipient to participate in a service for mental illness, serious emotional disturbance, or developmental disabilities or in community life. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
          • Temporary driver license: means a license issued by the department to an individual that authorizes the individual to operate a motor vehicle on the highways for the individual's authorized period of stay in the United States or, if there is no definite end to the period of authorized stay, a period of one (1) year. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
          • Testator: A male person who leaves a will at death.
          • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
          • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
          • Tractor: means any self-propelled vehicle designed or used as a traveling power plant or for drawing other vehicles, but having no provision for carrying loads independently. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
          • Traffic: means pedestrians, ridden or herded animals, vehicles, streetcars and other conveyances either singly or together while using any highway for purposes of travel. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
          • Trailer: means every vehicle with or without motive power, other than a pole trailer, designed for carrying persons or property and for being drawn by a motor vehicle and so constructed that no part of its weight rests upon the towing vehicle. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
          • Treatment resource: means any public or private facility, service, or program providing treatment or rehabilitation services for mental illness or serious emotional disturbance, including, but not limited to, detoxification centers, hospitals, community mental health centers, clinics or programs, halfway houses, and rehabilitation centers. See Tennessee Code 33-1-101
          • Trial: A hearing that takes place when the defendant pleads "not guilty" and witnesses are required to come to court to give evidence.
          • Truck: means every motor vehicle designed, used or maintained primarily for the transportation of property. See Tennessee Code 55-8-101
          • Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
          • United States: means the fifty (50) states and the District of Columbia. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
          • Vehicle: means every device in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a public highway, excepting devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
          • Violation: means a conviction except as otherwise provided in §. See Tennessee Code 55-50-102
          • written: includes printing, typewriting, engraving, lithography, and any other mode of representing words and letters. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105
          • Year: means a calendar year, unless otherwise expressed. See Tennessee Code 1-3-105