How the SAP Evaluation Process Works

Over the last several years, there have been substantial changes to U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations, both for employees and employers. A covered employee, who violates a DOT rule, must comply with a formal, structured evaluation by a qualified SAP. Failure to complete the formal SAP process will result in the safety sensitive employee being barred from working in safety sensitive duties.

How the process works

First, a confirmed violation (most commonly tests positive for alcohol or illicit drugs). At that time the employee must stand down from safety sensitive duties, and is not able to return to safety sensitive duties until the SAP has reported that the employee has successfully complied with the SAP’s recommendation for treatment and/or education.

Second, the employee must contact a qualified SAP and go in for a face-to-face substance abuse assessment. At the end of the assessment the employee will leave with a recommendation for either drug/alcohol treatment or education. The DOT has a mandatory minimum recommendation of education, commonly called (in Washington State) Alcohol/Drug Information School (A/DIS) it is 8-12 hours, usually held on a Saturday.

Third, Complete the treatment or education and contact the SAP for a Follow-up Evaluation.

Fourth, Go to the SAP for the Follow-up Evaluation. After this appointment the employer (or last employer) will be sent a Compliance Report that says whether or not the employee has complied with the SAP’s recommendation.

Fifth, If you are a Commercial Driver in Washington State, and your violation was against a CDL, you will need to go to the Department of Licensing to get your license reinstated, there is a re-qualification and licensing fees.

Al’ta Counseling’s SAP professionals are qualified under the current U.S. DOT requirements. Verifying paperwork is available upon request.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at 253-473-7586 or

DOT Qualified SAP Services

How the SAP process works

Al’ta Counseling and Testing 253-473-7586 or

702 Broadway, Suite 102, Tacoma, WA 98402

©Al'ta Counseling