What Types of Insurance Do You Need as a Commercial Trucker?

If you’re an owner or an operator of a commercial trucking company, then Chuck the Truck Duck should be your best friend. Or rather, the commercial trucking insurance that our fictional character/mascot represents should be your best friend! But why do you need insurance? To start, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) won’t let you operate without it. They will require proof of liability insurance for your Operating Authority/MC number application. Most shippers also require proof of insurance before entrusting their freight with your company. They’ll want to see your certificate of insurance showing you have the coverage they require to get to work. Proof of coverage is always worth having handy for inspections or in the event of an accident.

We know there’s a lot to navigate when selecting the best coverage for your company, and it can seem like a daunting and overwhelming project to tackle. So we’ve put together this guide to make this process as simple and fun as possible! We also created a guide to additional resources that commercial trucking companies may find helpful.

Commercial Truck Insurance

There are many different coverage options when it comes to the commercial trucking industry. Here are several options to consider: 

  • Non-Trucking Liability provides liability coverage to a third party if you are using your tractor not under dispatch. 
  • Optional Downtime Coverage protects your commercial truck during downtime from a covered accident.
  • Mechanical Breakdown / Roadside Assistance coverage assists with out-of-pocket expenses for repairs or tows. 
  • Trailer Interchange / Non-Owned Trailer Insurance covers damage to non-owned trailers when they receive physical damage. 

The main coverages we’ll dive into for trucking companies are auto liability, motor truck cargo and physical damage.

Motor Truck Cargo Insurance

As the name indicates, this insurance will cover the cargo. Covered property is property of others that you have accepted for transportation as a motor carrier for physical loss to the cargo. Coverage will give your customer the confidence that their goods will be covered while they are being delivered. Many freight brokers will require that you have cargo insurance to pick up a load.

Physical Damage Coverage

You’ve invested all this money into your beautiful rigs, so let’s make sure that you’re covered in the event of physical damage. There are two parts to physical damage coverage: collision and comprehensive. Collision provides coverage for your truck if you run into something. Comprehensive coverage will protect you for other types of damage, including theft, fire, hitting an animal, and other perils.

Trucking Liability Insurance

  • Auto Liability Insurance covers bodily injury and physical damage to others. When selecting this commercial trucking insurance, make sure that you have adequate limits and meet the requirements of the federally mandated liability limits, your state’s requirements, and the contract on your loan. You can find that info on the FMCSA website and your local, regional area transportation site. Most trucking companies are required to have at least $750,000 coverage but a lot of contracts and shippers require you to carry at least $1,000,000 auto liability coverage.
  • Motor Truck General Liability Insurance protects motor carriers or for-hire truckers in claims of bodily injury, personal injury, property damage liability, advertising injury liability, medical payments, product and completed operations not related to the auto liability or vehicles (that’s covered under your auto liability.

Whether you’re an owner-operator, motor carrier, or private carrier, we have customized commercial truck insurance coverage to meet your needs. We represent multiple commercial truck insurance companies so that we can provide you with the most bang for your buck. We also make it simple for you to get certificates of insurance and easily access your policy online 24/7. Ready to get started? 

We look forward to helping you with your commercial truck insurance needs!

Alex Rue