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What Does It Cost To Get Your Own Trucking Authority

What Does It Cost To Get Your Own Trucking Authority

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) charges truckers $300 for filing and issuing an operating authority. This fee includes the registration of your USDOT and MC number. Reinstating an existing authority costs $80, and requesting a name change on the paperwork has a meager $14 fee.

Hidden Trucker Expenses When Getting an Operating Authority

Filing an operating authority costs less than $500 in total, but the process comes with several hidden fees, including:

  • Insurance: Your insurance policy varies depending on your operating authority type.
  • Fuel: Many motor carriers offer fuel discounts to their lessees, which are challenging to acquire as a new owner-operator.
  • DAT and Truckstop Subscriptions: The Delivered at Terminal and Truckstop subscription fees can add up to $300 per month.
  • TMS: A standard Transportation Management Software can set your company back by over $10,000.
  • IFTA Filing: Interstate motor carriers need to report their fuel taxes.
  • ELD: The electronic logging device records your trucker’s hours of service and driving time.

Do not blindly jump into getting an operating authority. While owner-operators get to keep 100% of their profits, they also take responsibility for running every aspect of their business. Qualifying for an owner authority is one thing, but becoming an owner-operator is another. 

Reassess your trucking business multiple times before pulling the trigger. Ensure that you have a great network of shippers and brokers, understand what loads you want to take on, and have designated professionals running your different departments.

Did you decide to continue leasing to a motor carrier in the meantime? Let Assured Standard help with your insurance. Check out our piece explaining the insurance requirements on a leased carrier.

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