If you use vehicles to operate your business, one of the best things you can do to thrive is to get third-party commercial vehicle insurance.
Third-party commercial auto insurance policy offers excellent financial protection for your business. It minimizes significant financial losses due to unpredictable events when your business vehicles are on the road. This type of commercial vehicle insurance policy is also very affordable, so the costs of your business operations remain low.
Here is everything you need to know about third-party commercial auto insurance.
What Is Third-Party Commercial Vehicle Insurance?
Third-party business vehicle insurance is basic liability coverage for commercial motor vehicles. It covers losses, including property damage and bodily injury to third parties only (not you) if your business vehicles cause an accident.
It’s different from comprehensive insurance, which offers personal injury protection and collision coverage for your vehicles, even if you are the at-fault party in an accident.
‘Third party’ often refers to external entities involved in the accident and not associated with your company. This may be people or businesses.
How Does Third-Party Commercial Auto Insurance Policy Work?
Suppose you have third-party commercial auto insurance coverage for your business vehicles, and one of these vehicles is involved in an accident that causes harm to others and damage to their property. In that case, those affected individuals can take legal action to seek compensation for the injuries and property damage they’ve suffered.
In such a situation, your insurance provider will step in to cover the costs associated with the property damage and injuries sustained by the victims.
You won’t have to pay a dime out-of-pocket unless the claim made exceeds your business vehicle coverage limits. In such a scenario, you’ll pay for the amount above your commercial vehicle policy limit. Still, commercial vehicle insurance companies cover a chunk of the total cost needed to compensate victims of commercial vehicle accidents.
In addition to bodily injury and property damage compensation, your insurance provider covers your legal expenses throughout the lawsuit. A third-party commercial auto insurance cover ultimately saves your business from substantial financial losses in claim settlements and legal fees after an accident.
What Coverage Options Does Third-party Insurance Policy Provide?
Third-party commercial auto insurance policy offers two major types of liability coverage:
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage
Bodily injury commercial auto coverage includes medical payments coverage, where the insurance company covers the medical bills of third parties injured during the accident. These may be occupants of other vehicles involved in the accident or non-occupants like motorcyclists and pedestrians. Insurance providers also cover funeral expenses for third parties who lose their lives.
Property Damage Liability Coverage
Property damage liability insurance covers physical damages to others’ property in an accident. Third-party property damages extend beyond the damage to the injured victims’ cars and might include buildings nearby that get damaged as a result of your accident.
Insurance providers offer physical damage liability coverage through replacement costs settlements or actual cash value settlements.
Who Needs Third-Party Commercial Vehicle Insurance?
You need third-party commercial auto coverage if you own or lease vehicles and use them for business operations. It’s the basic business liability coverage legally required in most states. Most states set specific minimum liability coverage limits you must meet for bodily injury and property damage compensation, affecting your commercial auto insurance cost.
You are also required, by law, to get business auto insurance for your vehicles if you transport goods or people from state to state. You may need commercial truck insurance for larger commercial vehicles, like semi-trucks.
Accidents involving larger commercial vehicles, such as tractor-trailers, are often more severe than those involving other business autos. Regular commercial car insurance, therefore, may not provide adequate coverage for your large commercial vehicles.
Note that additional specialized coverage is mandatory if you use your business-owned vehicles for the following business purposes:
- Transporting hazardous materials
- Delivering food
- Offering taxi services
Further, the law requires all vehicles registered as commercial vehicles and those with a commercial license tag to have a commercial auto insurance policy. These may include:
- Hired passenger-type vehicles to transport people.
- Pick-up trucks that have a permanently attached camper
- Station wagons
- Multipurpose vehicles
You may also benefit from a third-party business auto insurance policy if you use your private vehicle for work-related errands like shopping for office supplies. Most personal auto policies don’t cover bodily injury or property damage incurred when using your private vehicle for business purposes.
Should You Finance Your Truck and Get Insurance?
Insurance is mandatory. Business vehicle owners require the minimum third-party commercial car insurance to operate in all states except Virginia and New Hampshire. Yet, purchasing commercial auto insurance in these states is still advisable.
On the other hand, financing your truck is a personal preference. We recommend it because it’s an affordable way to start or grow your business. This is especially true if you partner with expert truck financing institutions like Mission Financial Services.
Typically, the two go hand in hand. Most commercial vehicle loan lenders require that you purchase commercial auto insurance if they finance your truck.
Other Reasons To Consider Getting Commercial Auto Insurance
A commercial auto insurance policy helps you run your business at ease. It reduces the uncertainty of dealing with the risks your business autos are exposed to.
Business insurance promotes a steady cash flow. You can write off the insurance as a business expense and plan for your finances accordingly.
Liability Insurance saves you money. You avoid hefty financial penalties by complying with all statutory and contractual requirements. You also save thousands to millions of dollars when commercial auto insurance covers medical payments, property damage, and legal expenses during a claim.
You get a no-claim bonus discount if you want to renew your vehicle insurance at the end of a policy period and are yet to face a claim. This reduces your business costs.
Commercial vehicle insurance also offers some relief to injured victims. Medical payments, in particular, lift the financial burden of medical expenses, allowing those injured to focus on getting better.
When purchasing a commercial auto policy for your business autos, compare commercial auto insurance quotes from multiple providers. You’ll find a good insurance company with the most competitive rates this way.
You should get help from a qualified insurance agent. They’ll evaluate your business’s needs, type of business autos, and frequency of use, among other factors, to help you to help you afford optimal coverage. The best agent can also guide you step-by-step through the claims process whenever an accident occurs.
For more information on commercial vehicle insurance coverage options and their costs, hop over to Mission Financial Services and read our blog.
High-risk truck insurance can be tricky to secure. Although getting a good insurance plan is essential for a truck driver, finding the right insurer can also be challenging if you don’t meet all the ideal conditions.
Not only this, but many insurance companies who do accept high-risk drivers will charge a lot extra. And as you probably know, expensive insurance premiums can make a serious dent in your trucking business’s finances.
So, how do you know which high-risk commercial truck insurance companies are best to use?
In this guide, we’ll break down some of the best options for high-risk truck insurance.
High-Risk Commercial Truck Insurance Companies
Having the right high-risk truck insurance is vital if you run a trucking company. Commercial trucking is a high-risk industry, so having a reliable commercial truck insurance provider on your side is essential.
While your specific trucking insurance policy depends on your situation, here are some of the best high-risk commercial truck insurance companies to consider.
Progressive Commercial is a major insurance provider known for offering various commercial truck insurance options, including coverage for high-risk drivers and businesses.
The insurance company offers various coverage options for commercial truck drivers. Whether you’re looking to cover a fleet or are an independent owner-operator, Progressive offers commercial truck insurance premiums and plans that can cover your needs.
The Hartford specializes in commercial insurance and has a strong reputation for providing coverage to high-risk businesses, including those in the trucking industry.
While there are many insurance companies, The Hartford stands out as one of the top options for commercial truck insurance. Their flexible policies can match the specific needs of any trucking business. Of course, their coverage for high-risk commercial truck insurance is solid.
Evolution Insurance Brokers
This commercial truck insurance company provides solutions for all kinds of trucks and business purposes. Evolution Insurance includes customizable options to meet the insurer’s specific needs.
From short-haul to long-haul trucking, auto liability, trailer interchange covers, and much more, this is one of the most extensive insurance providers for the commercial trucking industry.
If you’re looking for commercial truck insurance policies, then you’re bound to come across Nationwide Insurance. This is one of the most popular and reputable commercial truck insurance companies.
Nationwide offers commercial truck insurance, including options for high-risk drivers and businesses, focusing on customizable coverage. Their commercial truck insurance works for businesses of all sizes, with varying coverage and vehicle needs.
GEICO, a well-known insurance company, also offers commercial truck insurance solutions, including coverage for high-risk situations.
This is one of the more prominent insurance companies out there, so you can be sure they have coverage available to match your specific needs. Whether you’re an owner-operator or manage a large fleet, trucking companies can use GEICO Commercial for their insurance coverage.
Berkshire Hathaway GUARD Insurance Companies
This insurer provides commercial auto insurance and may consider high-risk applicants, particularly those with a history of accidents or violations. As one of the major insurance companies, they offer a wide range of coverage options for trucking businesses.
Liberty Mutual offers a variety of commercial insurance products, including coverage for high-risk commercial trucking operations.
This major insurance provider offers a wide range of insurance plans, including general liability insurance, bodily injury insurance, physical damage coverage, comprehensive coverage for trucks, and more.
Zurich North America
Zurich is a global insurance provider that offers commercial truck insurance solutions for a range of businesses, including high-risk ones.
Their Motor Truck Cargo (MTC) program offers MTC coverage to “for hire” common and contract motor carriers. If you’re looking for a versatile and flexible truck insurance provider, then this may be a good option to consider.
AIG is another international insurer that provides commercial truck insurance coverage, and they may consider high-risk applicants.
If you operate commercial trucks, AIG should offer a good range of coverage solutions. The company offers flexible insurance coverage options to meet your specific business needs. Their truck insurance is more suitable for experienced truck drivers and companies, although there are options for more high-risk cases.
AmTrust Financial Services
AmTrust provides insurance solutions to small and mid-sized businesses, including high-risk commercial trucking operations. While most other insurance companies prefer to cover drivers with plenty of experience, AmTrust is available for trucking companies with varying levels of experience.
Their truck insurance is ideal for local areas or truckers who travel the entire country. They insure all fleet sizes and all types of trucking businesses – making AmTrust an ideal choice for those looking for high-risk commercial truck insurance.
Great American Insurance Group
Great American Insurance Group is a leading commercial truck insurance provider in the US. This company focuses on long-haul trucking and specializes in service to owner-operators.
Great American Insurance Group offers a range of insurance products, including commercial truck insurance, and may consider high-risk applicants. Whether you’re looking to protect your truck against physical damage or looking for non-trucking liability, contingent liability, or more, this company has a wide range of commercial insurance solutions to match your needs.
These are some of the best high-risk truck insurance companies out there. However, finding the right commercial truck insurance is subjective.
Policies and premiums can differ for each applicant, and so can the weight of risk that different insurance companies place on you.
The best option is to gather quotes from different commercial truck insurance providers and compare your options. This will help you find the most suitable insurance plan for your trucking business.
Other than insuring your vehicle, finding financing for your commercial truck can also be a tricky process. We make it easy at Mission Financial Services, where we help all kinds of truck drivers with all levels of risk secure the funding they need to purchase a semi-truck. Get in touch today to see how we can help you.
When you purchase a semi-truck, one of the first things you must do is get it properly insured. This involves getting primary liability insurance, as well as considering bobtail insurance.
Many drivers overlook Bobtail insurance, also known as non-trucking liability insurance. While it’s not always necessary to own a truck, this insurance can add significant value if you’re involved in a semi-truck accident while not driving on a delivery route.
This guide explores exactly what non-trucking liability insurance is, what it covers, and whether you should get bobtail insurance for your semi-truck.
What is Bobtail Insurance Coverage?
Bobtail insurance protects commercial truck drivers when operating their trucks without a trailer or cargo. It’s sometimes also referred to as non-trucking liability insurance.
Bobtail insurance is important because most commercial trucking insurance policies only provide coverage when the truck is driving or hauling freight. However, all kinds of possible issues could happen to your semi-truck while it’s not in action – which is when bobtail liability insurance will cover you.
Bobtail insurance is a different product from primary commercial trucking insurance. Primary insurance covers the truck while it’s engaged in commercial activities, such as hauling cargo. Bobtail insurance specifically covers the truck during non-business use or when it’s operating without a trailer.
Having both primary commercial truck insurance and non-trucking liability insurance provides complete coverage for your vehicle.
What Does Bobtail Insurance for Semi-Trucks Cover?
Insurance policies change with each broker, so each bobtail insurance plan is unique. However, bobtail liability insurance typically provides two main areas of coverage.
Bobtail insurance covers situations when a commercial truck is being driven for non-business or personal use. For example, if a trucker is driving the tractor (the front part of the truck) without a trailer for personal reasons, like going home after delivery, this coverage can protect them.
Bobtail insurance can also provide coverage for a parked semi-truck when it’s not in commercial use. Many commercial truck insurance companies only offer coverage when the truck is in active service.
The main focus of bobtail insurance is on liability protection. This type of truck insurance can help cover the costs if the truck driver is involved in an accident while not hauling a trailer and they are found to be at fault. This includes bodily injury and property damage liability. Truckers must have proper liability coverage at all times.
Who Needs Bobtail Insurance?
Anyone who owns a semi-truck can benefit from having non-trucking liability insurance.
This is especially true if you’re an owner-operator, as you’ll probably drive your truck’s trailer non-commercially at times. As your semi-truck is such a valuable asset, you’ll want to make sure it’s adequately insured at all times – which is why bobtail insurance is so valuable.
Trucking companies or truck lease agreements might sometimes require bobtail insurance. So, some truck drivers may need to take out a bobtail insurance policy to buy a semi-truck. You could get bobtail insurance coverage for a single commercial vehicle or this non-trucking liability coverage for an entire fleet.
If you often drive your truck without a trailer, then getting bobtail insurance is worth considering. Bobtailing is also known to be more dangerous than driving a loaded truck, so having this coverage can add a great deal of value. Without it, you may have to pay enormous legal fees and damages costs in the event of an accident.
Even if it’s not legally mandated, it’s a good idea for truckers who operate their vehicles without trailers to have this coverage to avoid potential financial risks.
How Much Does Bobtail Insurance Cost?
As with any commercial vehicle insurance policy, the cost of non-trucking liability insurance depends on various factors. These are mainly focused on:
- Your personal driving history: It’s more likely for truck drivers with a longer driving record and more experience with a CDP to get lower premiums on their non-trucking liability insurance.
- Usage: How long you plan to need bobtail liability insurance based on how often you drive without a trailer will be considered. The more you bobtail, the more expensive your insurance premiums could be.
- Insurance history: Any bobtail insurance company considers past insurance claims and policies to understand your risk profile.
- Your coverage limits: Of course, the amount you want to be covered up to in liability costs dictates how much you’ll pay for your bobtail truck insurance. The higher your coverage is, the higher your costs will be.
So, the cost of bobtail insurance can vary greatly depending on the driver’s circumstances. Different bobtail insurance companies will also charge differently.
However, East Insurance Group says drivers often pay around $400 to carry bobtail insurance. Temporary bobtail insurance policies are also available at lower annual premiums.
Where to Find Bobtail Truck Insurance
Many commercial vehicle insurance providers offer bobtail coverage. Most insurers provide quotes on their websites. It’s also worth looking into insurance comparison sites to see what bobtail and trucking liability insurance options are available. This also makes it easy to compare quotes.
Take a look at our roundup of the top commercial truck insurance brokers to help you find the best bobtail insurance coverage.
While saving money on insurance costs may seem attractive, being caught short without insurance can be an absolute killer for your trucking business. This is why it’s essential to consider non-trucking liability insurance if it makes sense for your situation.
You might even need non-trucking liability insurance to purchase a semi-truck in the first place.
If you’re looking to buy a new truck, contact us at Mission Financial Services. We make it easy for all commercial truck drivers to gain financing for their ideal semi-truck.
As a new commercial truck driver, it can be difficult to find good insurance coverage for your vehicle. Insurance companies often see new drivers as risky and only provide coverage to those who have been driving trucks for two or more years.
Additionally, the companies that do offer insurance for new drivers often charge high rates. This means you may end up paying two or three times more than experienced drivers. However, there are ways to find affordable insurance coverage if you know what type of coverage you need and how to search for cheaper options.
What Type of Coverage Do New Truck Drivers Need?
The type of commercial trucking insurance coverage you need as a new driver depends on the category of commercial truck drivers you belong to. There are two main categories of commercial truck drivers:
Company drivers work for a trucking company as employees or independent contractors. You don’t need commercial trucking insurance if you’re a new truck driver directly employed by a trucking company. The company is responsible for insurance coverage.
However, you may need insurance coverage if you’re an independent truck driver working for a trucking business.
Owner-operators have their own trucking business and operate their commercial vehicles. There are two types of owner-operators: those who work under the authority of a motor carrier (leased owner-operators) and those who operate on their authority.
Leased owner-operators are covered by their motor carriers’ commercial truck insurance coverage.
Depending on the requirements of a motor carrier, an owner-operator with leased authority may need to purchase motor truck cargo or bobtail commercial truck insurance. If you fall under this category, read your lease agreement carefully to determine which additional insurance coverage you need.
Own Authority Owner-operators
Own authority owner-operators are solely responsible for purchasing all the mandatory commercial truck insurance policies they require to thrive. This includes some or all of the essential truck insurance coverage options outlined below.
What does Commercial Truck Insurance for New Drivers Cover?
Commercial auto policies for new drivers offer various essential and optional insurance coverage.
Essential Commercial Truck Insurance for New Drivers
Essential trucking insurance for new drivers is coverage all new truck drivers should consider to protect their ventures from significant financial losses. These coverage options include:
Trucking Primary Liability Coverage
Primary liability coverage is the minimum commercial truck insurance all trucking companies and owner-operators must have to operate in nearly all states. It includes bodily injury and physical damage coverage if you cause an accident. With a primary liability cover, your insurance company pays for the injured parties’ medical expenses and covers any damages to their vehicles.
Physical Damage Liability Insurance
Physical damage coverage protects your commercial trucks from all losses and damages they are exposed to on the road. Most commercial insurance companies offer this coverage in two parts:
Collision coverage: This insurance helps pay for repairing or replacing your vehicle if it is damaged in a collision with another vehicle or object.
Comprehensive coverage: This cover includes compensation for non-collision losses such as theft, fire, vandalism, and harsh weather conditions.
Unlike primary liability insurance, physical damage coverage is not required by law. However, it’s critical commercial truck insurance for new drivers as it protects the main asset, providing business security.
Non-Trucking Liability Insurance
Non-trucking liability coverage protects you if you get into an accident when driving your commercial truck for errands unrelated to work.
General Liability Insurance
Motor truck general liability insurance coverage pays for bodily injury and physical damages unrelated to driving your commercial truck but involving your business. This includes bodily injury compensation for accidents on your business property or those for-hire truckers caused away from your location.
Motor Truck Cargo Coverage
Motor truck cargo coverage protects the goods you haul. It’s an essential coverage option for most leased owner-operators as some motor carriers require truck drivers under their lease to carry cargo insurance.
Optional Commercial Truck Insurance For New Drivers
As a new driver, you should get more coverage to reduce risk and ensure you succeed. To do this, consider the following optional commercial truck insurance for new drivers:
Loss mitigation: Used to cover any losses that exceed your truck insurance policy limits.
GAP protection: GAP (Guaranteed Asset Protection) insurance is optional. This coverage covers any “gap” between the actual cash value of your vehicle at the time of loss and what you owe on your auto loan or lease.
How To Find Affordable Commercial Truck Insurance For New Drivers
There are three steps you can take to find affordable truck insurance for new drivers.
Step 1: Evaluate Your Business Needs
Evaluating your business needs will help you identify the coverage you need to avoid purchasing excess or unnecessary coverage. To do this, assess the common factors insurance providers use to set their commercial truck insurance premiums. These include your operating radius, vehicle and cargo type, FMCSA requirements, location, etc.
Step 2: Compare Quotes From Multiple Commercial Truck Insurance Companies
Get quotes from several commercial truck insurance companies and settle for one with high-quality coverage at an affordable rate.
Look at how the rates of different commercial truck insurance providers fare compared to the national average rates. Here’s a guide to help you understand the average commercial truck insurance cost for various coverage options.
Also, evaluate different commercial truck insurance companies based on their reputation, customer support, and availability to get the best insurance company.
You can get quotes from multiple commercial truck insurance providers at once through commercial trucking insurance brokers like Evolution Insurance Brokers.
Step 3: Negotiate Best Deal
Once you’ve identified the best commercial truck insurance providers, negotiate with each and settle for the best deal. Major insurance companies might be reluctant to offer discounts to new truck drivers, but it’s worth a try.
Getting the right commercial truck insurance policy gives you the financial stability and peace of mind you need to grow your venture. You might lose thousands to millions of dollars in settlement claims without insurance.
For additional peace of mind and security for your trucking business, we’ve partnered with TrüNorth™ to provide comprehensive commercial truck warranty protection. We can also help finance your commercial truck purchases to help you grow, even if you’re a first-time buyer. Contact us to learn more.
As a truck driver, you’ll need to know precisely how to deal with a semi-truck accident if one happens.
While it’s essential to know how to avoid accidents in the first place, accidents still happen all the time. Nearly 388,000 truck accidents happen annually across the U.S.
If you can’t prevent the accident from taking place, the best thing you can do is to deal with the accident as efficiently as possible. Each accident is different and will come with its challenges. However, the same general process can be followed after an accident occurs.
Here are the steps you should follow if you’ve experienced a semi-truck accident.
What to Do in an Accident With Semi Truck: Steps to Follow
Check for Injuries
First and foremost, check yourself and others involved for any injuries. While there’s much to consider during a truck accident, safety should always be your priority.
If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately to request immediate medical attention. Even minor injuries should be reported, as a complete medical evaluation may reveal the injuries to be more severe than suspected.
Identifying possible injuries will also help you understand how best to deal with the truck accident in terms of moving vehicles and clearing up any wreckage.
Once emergency services have been notified about any injuries, you can move on to dealing with the semi-truck accident.
Move to Safety
If possible, move your vehicle to the side of the road or a safe location to avoid further accidents. Turn on hazard lights to alert other drivers.
This isn’t possible for some truck accidents, and it’s not a good idea to try to move any vehicles if they’re in hazardous situations. However, if your vehicle is alright and you can clear the road without causing any harm, then try to do this.
Before moving the vehicle, though, you’ll want to take pictures of the car accident. This is important for the truck accident investigation – more on this later.
Call Law Enforcement
Once the scene is as safe as possible, the next step is to alert the authorities about the truck accident.
Contact the police to report the accident, even if it’s minor. Having an official report can be valuable for insurance claims and legal purposes. If you’re a truck driver who crosses state boundaries, it’s wise to know which local law enforcement numbers to call for each state you travel through.
You’ll need information to contact the other driver’s insurance company. Make sure you exchange this information before departing the scene of the accident.
Exchange contact, insurance, and driver’s license information with the other driver. Include their company name, contact number, and any relevant details. Semi-truck accidents can sometimes be tricky to report and follow through with insurance, but having the other driver’s contact details will help the process.
An essential part of dealing with a semi-truck accident is gathering enough evidence to report the accident to your insurance company.
If it’s safe to do so, take photos of the accident scene, the positions of the vehicles, any damage sustained, and road or weather conditions. Taking videos with your mobile phone will also be useful.
The more detailed your documentation is, the better, as this will all help make the insurance claims process go faster. So, take your time carefully documenting the scene of the accident.
If there were any witnesses to the accident, ask them for their contact information. Their statements can provide valuable support for your case.
While this isn’t always possible or necessary, having an extra witness statement is always helpful to help with any legal claims or police reports.
While exchanging information with the involved parties is essential, avoid discussing fault or assigning blame at the scene. Stick to the facts when talking to the police, other drivers, and witnesses.
Always try to keep a cool head and focus purely on the accident and how best to deal with it. While your emotional condition can be difficult after a semi-truck accident, staying calm and collected will make the process easier to manage.
Contact Your Insurance Company
As soon as you’ve dealt with the accident, notify your insurance company about what happened. They will guide you on the necessary steps for filing a claim and getting compensation.
Having reliable insurance is one of the most essential parts of starting a trucking company. Once you’ve found the right commercial truck insurance provider, ensure you know how to reach them in an emergency.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if you don’t feel seriously injured, seeking medical attention after an accident is always advisable. Some injuries might not be immediately apparent and could become more significant as time passes.
Avoid Settlement Agreements
While this differs from case to case, it’s generally best to avoid settlement agreements immediately.
Do not sign any settlement agreements or release forms from the trucking company or their insurance representatives without consulting your legal counsel. Make sure you deal with a lawyer when going through settlement negotiations. This will help you get the best deal and compensation for your situation.
You must consult an attorney if the accident resulted in significant injuries, damages, or disputes. Try to consult with a personal injury attorney specializing in commercial vehicle accidents. They often offer a free consultation – so make use of these.
Semi-truck accidents may be the last thing you’ll ever want to deal with. However, they sometimes cannot be avoided.
Knowing how to deal with these accidents will help you get through the accident faster and safer. Following the proper steps will also make it easier to get an appropriate settlement after the accident.
If you need to purchase a new semi-truck, you may need to find the right financing solution to make it happen. Get in touch with us at Mission Financial Services, where we help all kinds of commercial truck drivers access the financing they need to purchase a semi-truck.
The cost of commercial truck insurance can vary widely depending on many factors. These factors include the type of trucks, their usage, the driving records of the drivers, the geographic location of the business, the amount of coverage needed, and the deductible chosen.
Generally, commercial truck insurance can range from several thousand to tens of thousands of dollars annually per vehicle.
In this article, we discuss how much you’re likely to pay for different types of commercial truck insurance. We also offer tips for keeping your insurance costs low without compromising coverage quality.
What is the Cost Of Different Types of Commercial Insurance Coverage?
There are several major types of commercial truck insurance coverage. Some are required by law, and you cannot run your trucking company without them. Other types are not legally required but are essential to protect your trucking business from losses due to legal claims in the event of an accident.
Here is a summary of the insurance costs for different types of Insurance coverage:
Primary Liability Coverage
Primary liability is the minimum liability coverage all trucking business owners, including autonomous commercial truck drivers, must have. Costs range from $5,000 to $7,000 (about $500 average monthly) for owner-operators with their authority.
If you’re an owner-operator working with a motor carrier, the law requires your motor carrier to cover these costs.
Usually, primary liability includes bodily injury and property damage liability as one. This way, it covers the medical expenses of victims injured in an accident caused by your semi-truck and offers compensation for any physical damages.
Physical Damage Coverage
You’ll pay between $1,000 and $3,000 (or $100 to $300 monthly) on average for physical damage insurance. These costs vary significantly because physical damage insurance payments are often calculated as a percentage of the truck’s total value.
All the same, this is essential coverage because of its comprehensive nature. It protects your semi-truck from damages as a result of collisions, vandalism, theft, and even harsh weather conditions.
General Liability Coverage
General liability insurance is not as costly as primary liability insurance, yet it can help your commercial trucking business save money. You’ll pay approximately $500 – $600 minimum per year, although this cost can be much higher.
General liability insurance covers you for more than accidents involving your trucks. It covers you for any damages or injuries related to your trucking business. Say a customer falls and gets injured on your business premises. You won’t have to pay their medical bills out-of-pocket if your commercial truck insurance policy covers general liability.
Non-trucking Liability Coverage
Non-trucking liability protects you when using your semi-truck for purposes other than work. It costs about $400 annually on the lower end but might be as much as $1644.
Bobtail insurance covers owner-operators who sometimes drive their semi-truck without its trailer in tow. It’s a requirement by most motor carriers. It might be necessary for for-hire truckers operating on a lease with a motor carrier. This insurance costs between $300 and $400 annually.
Motor Truck Cargo Insurance
Cargo insurance costs vary according to the type of cargo you haul. The standard cargo coverage limit is about $100,000. Still, some shipping companies require owner-operators to get up to $1M in coverage.
For $1M cargo coverage, you might pay as little as $400 per year or as much as $1,800.
Umbrella insurance for semi trucks acts as an extra layer of protection in case you are involved in a severe accident or lawsuit.
The average cost for this type of insurance is $5000 to $7000 per year. But the cost of umbrella insurance for semi trucks can vary widely depending on several factors including risk factors such as the routes you drive and your driving history.
Other Factors Affecting Semi-truck Insurance Costs
Understanding the factors that influence the cost of commercial truck insurance gives you insight into what insurance providers consider when setting their rates. Here are some critical factors that determine your semi-truck insurance cost.
Federal & State Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) sets regulations all truckers must comply with to operate. At the same time, states set their minimum coverage limits for commercial truck insurance.
These regulations guide how insurance providers create their trucking insurance policies and premiums.
For instance, an owner-operator in Nebraska pays higher semi-truck insurance costs than one in New Jersey because the two states have different minimum coverage limits.
Your vehicle specifications and overall condition, including the vehicle type and truck’s weight, determine your cost of commercial insurance. You’ll pay more to insure heavy trucks. The size and value of your fleet also matter. You might pay less if you insure your entire fleet as a bundle.
Type of Goods Hauled
Trucking insurance for hauling hazardous materials costs more than similar insurance for transporting non-hazardous goods.
Radius of Operation
If trucks travel longer distances or cover more miles, your insurance costs will be higher. This is because the chances of an accident increase the longer the truck is on the road.
Experience of Truck Drivers
You pay less for commercial insurance if you work with experienced truck drivers with clean driving records.
A good credit history helps you qualify for affordable commercial truck insurance rates.
Coverage Limits & Deductibles
When a claim is made (deductible), the out-of-pocket amount affects your truck insurance costs. When choosing a high deductible and low coverage limit, you pay less for commercial truck insurance.
Tips for Reducing Insurance Costs and Keeping Them Low
- Maintain a clean driving record.
- Monitor your credit reports to ensure you maintain a good credit history.
- Reduce the distance covered by avoiding unnecessary trips and finding efficient routes for making the necessary trips.
- Consider getting a bundle commercial insurance package, where you combine all your liabilities and get one heavy trucking insurance package to cover them all.
- Ask for discounts, especially when insuring an entire fleet.
- Consider getting usage-based insurance. It’s cheaper. Check out our guide on usage-based insurance to learn more about this.
Remember, commercial auto insurance is not the same as commercial truck insurance. Auto insurance includes other types of commercial vehicles like buses, whereas truck insurance is specific for commercial trucks.
You must get the right insurance for your trucking company. Operating without proper insurance can lead to severe penalties, fines, and even the suspension of your business operations.
You may want to consider getting help from a licensed insurance agent to find the best commercial insurance to cover your specific business adequately.
If you have any questions on commercial trucking insurance, give Mission Financial Services a call. We are always ready to help!