Department of Transportation/Substance Abuse Professional Evaluation   (DOT/SAP EVALUATION)   Serving:       FMCSA     FTA    FAA    PHMSA     FRA   USCG

                                     235 E. Ponce de Leon Ave., Suite 225, Decatur, GA 30030                

Phone: (470) 766-0686  or  (770) 905-1291                                                                                                                        Fax: (678) 668-7222

Gail Venerable, LPC, SAP, ICADC, Psychotherapist, DUI Clinical Evaluator, EAS-C

Gail Venerable of Venerable Counseling Services, LLC is registered with the FMCSA Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse. Eligible to be designated by you in the clearinghouse as your SAP after a working relationship is established.  Once designated I can report in the Clearinghouse your SAP initial assessment completion date and the date you are eligible for return-to-duty testing..

Testing Positive or Refusal to Test

According to the U.S. DOT, when you test positive or refuse a test, you are not permitted to perform safety-sensitive duties for any DOT-regulated employer until you have seen a Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) and successfully completed the return-to-duty process, which includes a Federal return-to-duty drug and/or alcohol test. Working in a safety-sensitive  position before successfully completing the return-to-duty process is a violation of the regulations.

The Role of a SAP

If you have failed a random drug test or one that followed an accident that occurred on the job, and your position falls under the guidelines of the U.S. DOT, it is necessary for you to see a (SAP). The SAP is certified, trained and has the knowledge to be in this role. SAPs, in accordance with the guidelines of the DOT, are the professionals who:

  • Evaluate employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation.
  • Make recommendations about the education, treatment, follow-up testing and aftercare of the individual.
  • Monitor the process.
  • Represent the major decision point—and, in some instances, the only decision point—an employer may have in choosing whether or not to place an employee at the steering wheel of a school bus, at the controls of a plane, at the helm of an oil tanker, at the throttle of a train, in the engineer compartment of a subway car or at the emergency control valves of a natural gas pipeline, according to the DOT.
  • The ability to say that the employee has—or has not—complied with his recommendations.

What will a SAP Do and What is included in the Fee

  • Make a face-to-face clinical assessment which includes standardized testing to determine if there is substance abuse problem. DOT rules require some type of treatment/education.
  • The SAP recommends one or more treatment providers and assists the employee in selecting the most appropriate provider and arranging for enrollment in the program.
  • An initial evaluation report is sent to the Designated Employee Representative (DER).
  • The SAP maintains regular contact with the treatment provider to ensure compliance with the treatment plan and suitability of the level of service.
  • The follow-up evaluation is conducted to determine successful compliance and completion of the recommended treatment. A “Notice of Compliance” or a “Notice of Noncompliance” is sent to the employer. If the employee has successfully completed the treatment, the “Notice of Compliance” will include a schedule for follow-up drug testing and any recommendations for aftercare.
  • If requested, the SAP will monitor the employee’s recovery by conducting regular face to face interviews and revising any follow-up testing program when appropriate. Fees for this service may be over and above the initial evaluation fee.

What a SAP Does Not Do

It is important to note that a SAP is not an advocate for the employer or the employee. The role of the SAP is to protect the public interest in safety by professionally evaluating the employee and recommending the appropriate education/treatment, follow-up tests and aftercare.

SAPs do not make a “fitness for duty” determination as part of the re-evaluation (unless required to do so under an applicable DOT agency regulation). The employer (the DOT) decides whether the employee should be placed back to work in a safety-sensitive position. In short, the SAP is the person who verifies if the employee has successfully complied with his initial recommendation.

We will need the following information from you during your initial phone call:

  • Your name, title, company name, address, phone number
  • Type of DOT Modality (i.e., FMCSA, FRA, FTA, FAA, RSPA or USCG)
  • Employee name, address, phone number, social security number and date of birth
  • Violation and date of violation
  • Current employment status of employee
  • Name of Designated Employee Representative (“DER”) 
  • Who is responsible for payment: the employer or the employee. (If fees are to be paid by the employer, full payment can be forwarded to Venerable Counseling Services, LLC at the time of the referral or an invoice can accompany the initial report).