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    Non Trucking Liability: Owner-Operated and For-Hire Trucks

    To protect their drivers, federal law states that trucking companies need to cover drivers for a minimum of $750,000 per accident. While smaller carriers with five or fewer trucks might only get basic types of tracking insurance, larger operators often look for other forms of insurance coverage to protect themselves from various forms of trucking liability, such as non-trucking liability insurance.

    What Is Non-Trucking Liability?

    Non-trucking liability insurance covers owner-operators in terms of non-business use, such as on days off. Typically, the motor carrier will provide truck insurance only when the truck is being used for work purposes. Most insurance policies won't cover personal use without purchasing additional insurance coverage, due to their commercial nature.

    What Does Non-Trucking Liability Cover?

    Non-trucking liability insurance comes with many benefits, including coverage for bodily injury and property damage during personal or non-business use. It can provide protection for a trucker against a potential lawsuit from an accident and help cover any medical bills someone may suffer.

    For-Hire Trucks

    Even though non-trucking liability coverage isn't required by state law, an owner-operator may need non-trucking liability if it is required by the motor carrier. The liability policy may be part of a signed lease agreement between the operator and the motor carrier, in the event that the trucker causes an accident using one of their vehicles.

    What's the Difference Between Owner-Operated and For-Hire Coverage?

    Depending on the needs of a company, there are different auto liability policy types for owner-operated and for-hire insurance. However, both types of coverage would also be beneficial when combined with non-trucking liability coverage and physical damage coverage to add an extra layer of protection for their business.

    Owner-Operated Coverage

    In the event that an owner-operator is leased onto a motor carrier, they're usually covered under the auto liability insurance from their company. However, the owner-operator should be aware that this coverage is only applicable to a load or dispatch. It can provide coverage for third-party injuries or damaged property if the motor carrier is held liable.

    Physical damage insurance should also be purchased by an owner-operator to cover damage or loss to their tractor itself.

    For-Hire Coverage

    When it comes to for-hire coverage, companies typically provide coverage for permanently leased independent contractors like primary liability insurance coverage. However, they may need to purchase additional insurance coverage on top of this.

    They need to verify with their motor carrier whether other types of coverage like bobtail coverage and physical truck insurance is needed in addition to basic forms of insurance. They may also need non-trucking liability to cover all their bases.

    What is Bobtail Insurance?

    Bobtail insurance provides protection for a tractor or truck when it is operated without a trailer attached. It is often confused with non-trucking liability insurance, which only covers a vehicle when it is being used for personal reasons. In contrast, bobtail liability applies whether a vehicle is under dispatch or not.

    In the event that the trailer isn't covered by primary liability, bobtail coverage can function effectively. However, bobtail insurance won't protect provide coverage for physical damage if it occurs when someone is e pulling a trailer, driving a truck for motor carriers, or using a truck to make money.

    What is Physical Damage Coverage?

    Physical damage coverage can help pay for truck repairs in the event that it's damaged in a collision with another vehicle. The two types of trucking insurance include collision and comprehensive insurance, with comprehensive truck insurance covering a wider range of damage.

    How Much Does Non-Trucking Liability Insurance Cost?

    Because non-trucking liability insurance is not as broad compared to other insurance policies, it can cost around 29-$50 per month. To calculate this number, insurance companies check factors like frequency of personal driving and more to come up with a number for the non-trucking liability insurance premium.

    Additional Resources

    Occupational Safety and Health Administration - Trucking Industry Safety and Health Info

    This source provides essential information on common trucker illnesses and injuries as well as general trucking safety tips to be aware of.

    U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics - Truck Transportation Industry

    This source describes workplace trends in the trucking industry, along with workforce statistics, earnings and hours, and pricing.

    Getting Collision Insurance for Your Trucking Company

    In addition to other types of basic insurance, non-trucking liability coverage and bobtail insurance provide coverage that can help protect businesses and truck drivers from the financial aftermath of an accident.

    While purchasing a cheaper form of truck insurance might seem tempting, it might not provide adequate protection. Examining the coverage depth across different providers can help motor carriers make more informed decisions.

    For more information on other forms of commercial auto liability policies and insurance coverage that companies and individuals in the trucking industry should look into, request custom-tailored insurance quotes on Assured Standard.

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    Assured Standard will protect your business with the right insurance, depending on your needs. Now more than ever, it’s crucial to have the right general liability insurance experts on your side. Protecting the future of your business starts today.
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