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How To Get CDL Grants For Felons

Written by: Jody Adams
Last updated: January 31, 2024

Getting back on your feet after committing a felony might hurt your career. Many ex-felons were able to support their family, thanks to CDL grants for felons and other CDL training programs.

They can also apply to truck driving schools for convicts to obtain their driver's licenses. School subsidies for criminals are also available for those who cannot afford the truck driving school tuition.

The CDL grants for felons who may or may not have excellent credit provide them with financial assistance. Fortunately, various groups have stepped forward to support those who vow to work honestly and diligently.

Sources That Offer CDL Grants For Felons

The following are the sources that give away CDL grants for felons:

Inmates to Entrepreneurs

Inmates to Entrepreneurs is a non-profit outreach organization that provides financial assistance to former inmates and offenders who want to create their own enterprises. Sageworks supports this initiative, which attempts to make ex-felons respectable members of society. They not only provide support, but they also give information on how to start and maintain a business.

Every year, nearly 600,000 people are released from jail and strive to reintegrate into society as productive members. Despite applying for jobs at higher rates than the general population, formerly jailed people are half as likely to find work and have unemployment rates five times higher than the national average. A simple web search in Google ensures that no one can truly escape their past.

Discrimination against the would-be employees feeds a cycle of economic insecurity, forcing many to turn to illicit activities to make ends meet. It's no surprise, therefore, that nearly two-thirds of formerly jailed people return to prison within three years. With free in-person and online instruction, Inmates to Entrepreneurs aims to assist people with criminal records to launch their own small companies.


GoFundMe is a crowdfunding platform to promote yourself and seek donations to support your cause. One can raise funds for CDL grants for felons by contacting people through this website. GoFundMe website has assisted individuals in raising more than $3 billion for themselves.

People mostly utilize it to raise funds for educational issues, medical bills, charitable donations, training sessions, and other similar issues. You can approach folks who support ex-felons and ask for donations to fund CDL training.


IndieGoGo is another crowdfunding site that can assist ex-felons and convicts. It can help you raise funds for CDL training and grants for offenders. All people judged to be qualified can receive professional assistance from the site. Your concept and motivation should be compelling enough to persuade the panelists. They will then determine whether or not you are eligible for the fundraising.

Tips For Ex-Felons Seeking For CDL Training

Here are a few tips for ex-felons who need CDL training. 

  • First, make sure you have a valid driver's license and a permanent address. The majority of trucking companies in the United States request this as a baseline need. If you currently do not have a valid driver's license, we strongly advise you to obtain one as soon as possible.
  • Second, selecting the appropriate transportation business is critical. You should avoid applying for jobs at large corporations. We strongly suggest modest-to-medium-sized trucking companies that hire convicts. Contact them and see whether they can provide you with a pre-hire note guaranteeing that you will be hired after completing your CDL training. Of course, not every convicted offender will receive this letter. You must be on your best behavior and appropriately express your condition with good language. Don't forget to ask for their advice on which CDL training program is suitable for you.
  • Third, convicted offenders may be eligible for free CDL training. The idea is to find a trucking company that will pay for your CDL training in exchange for a commitment to work for them for at least one to three years after you complete it. This doesn't happen very often, but it is possible. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Are there grants available for felons to obtain a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) in the US?

Yes, there are grants and financial assistance programs available for felons looking to obtain a Commercial Driver's License (CDL) in the US. These programs can be offered by state agencies, non-profit organizations, or workforce development initiatives.

How can I find and apply for CDL grants for felons?

To find and apply for CDL grants for felons, start by contacting your state's Department of Labor or workforce development agency, as they may have information about available grants or financial assistance programs. You can also research non-profit organizations that support ex-offenders, such as the Second Chance Program, which may offer assistance in obtaining a CDL. Additionally, consult local community colleges or vocational schools that offer CDL training, as they may have information on financial aid or grant opportunities.

What are the eligibility requirements for CDL grants for felons?

Eligibility requirements for CDL grants for felons vary depending on the specific program. Generally, applicants must have a felony conviction, demonstrate financial need, and meet any additional criteria specified by the program. Some programs may require participants to undergo a background check, complete a training program, or maintain a certain grade point average during CDL training.

Can all felons apply for CDL grants, or are there restrictions based on the type of conviction?

Restrictions for CDL grants for felons vary depending on the specific program and state regulations. Some programs may have limitations based on the type or severity of the felony conviction, while others may be open to all felons. It is essential to review the specific eligibility requirements for each program before applying.

Are there any additional resources available for felons pursuing a CDL?

In addition to grants and financial assistance programs, there are other resources available for felons pursuing a CDL. These may include job placement assistance, support services, and mentoring programs offered by non-profit organizations or workforce development agencies. It is crucial to explore all available resources to improve your chances of success in obtaining a CDL and finding employment in the trucking industry.


It is a fact that life is difficult following a felony conviction. There are numerous challenges that an ex-felon must overcome, but people should not deter someone who wishes to live a productive life. The sources listed above can assist with financial aid and offer CDL grants for felons. Are you interested in learning more about the various grants and foundations that can help you with your day-to-day needs? Check out the rest of Gov Relations' resources today!

Jody Adams
Jody Adams is an accomplished editor-in-chief with a deep understanding of social care and government benefits issues. With a background in journalism and a master's degree in Public Policy, Jody has spent her career shaping the narrative around social policies and their impact on society. She has worked with renowned publications, effectively bridging the gap between complex policy analysis and public understanding. Jody's editorial expertise ensures that vital information on social care and government benefits reaches a broad audience, empowering individuals to make informed decisions.
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