Substance Abuse Professional

Qualified DOT Evaluator

What is an SAP?

DOT employees who perform safety sensitive tasks are subject to Federal drug and alcohol testing regulations. Under these DOT regulations, an employee who violates these regulations must stop safety sensitive duties and cannot return until s/he has completed a DOT Return to Duty process. The evaluation of these employees must be completed by a Substance Abuse Professional (SAP)

A SAP is a professional who has been qualified to provide evaluations to DOT employees. A drug counselor or therapist who has not met the training and professional qualifications cannot provide SAP services.

SAP Services

As a Qualified SAP Donna M. Hunter, LCSW completes an evaluation on the DOT employee. This evaluation entails both a face to face interview and standardized testing. In order to complete this evaluation, it is understood, the evaluator will contact all parties who have information regarding the employee and the violation in question. After the initial evaluation, a course of treatment and or education will be recommended. Once the employee completes the recommended services, s/he returns for a follow up evaluation.

All recommended services must be completed to be found in compliance. Once an employee has chosen an SAP, s/he must follow through with the recommendations. They cannot choose another SAP in hopes of finding recommendations they believe are more favorable. If an employee does not complete the recommendations, they will be found in non-compliance and will not be allowed to complete a Return to Work process.

What will an Evaluation Cost?

Completing a SAP evaluation requires considerable time from your SAP. In addition to the two face to face interviews, the SAP must review all testing that was completed, call all parties with information regarding the violation, write a comprehensive substance abuse evaluation, determine the follow up recommendations and complete documentation of compliance or non-compliance. In addition, the SAP remains a resource to the employee moving forward in their Return to Work process.

In general, the employee is required to pay for all evaluation and follow up services. Occasionally the employer will cover the costs either independently or through an EAP program. An employee should discuss these options with their employer.

As of 1/2021 Donna M. Hunter, LCSW, CAP charges $600 for a SAP evaluation. In general, an initial evaluation can be scheduled within 3 business days. The evaluation, without complications will be completed within the next five business days. It is the employee’s responsibility to contact the SAP once they have completed any recommended treatment and or education.

If you have any questions about the SAP process or are ready to set up an evaluation:


To learn more about SAP evaluations and DOT please visit: