In one of my earlier posts, I mentioned that getting into trucking – just like with any new business – is going to cost you some money. Obtaining the right insurance is one of those hard costs you need to anticipate. Operating without commercial truck insurance is not an option. You must provide the appropriate commercial insurance to operate legally in the U.S. and Canada.
When doing any sort of interstate or intrastate commercial hauling, the law requires a minimum $1,000,000 in general liability insurance. About two years ago the federal requirement for cargo insurance was dropped, but that does not mean you don’t need it. Every shipper or broker you haul for will require you to have cargo insurance to cover their load. I have $150,000 in cargo insurance coverage and that will generally cover most freight I carry. When that is not enough coverage, I purchase spot insurance to fill the gap between my coverage and that required by the shipper.
Based on what I experienced going through the process, here are some answers to questions I had along the way. Hope this is helpful:When do I get my insurance?
Once you’ve completed all the necessary forms and before you are granted your Operating Authority privileges, you will need to have your commercial insurance in place. There will be a processing/waiting period. You won’t be issued your MC number or be able to legally operate without it. So it’s not something you can wait on or let go for a while. It will be checked at scales, and you will need it for setting up carrier packages, especially if you’re an independent owner-operator just breaking into the game.