Are you shopping for low cost auto insurance or Commercial Truck Insurance in California, regardless if you live in Los Angeles CA or Orange County CA? If so, before you start comparing trucker insurance, let’s review what a Truckers Coverage Form means to you.
If you are a business that has to deal with major trucking and other land transportation issues, than you would have to utilize a complex mixture of specialized auto insurance coverage’s to cover your policy.
An examination of these kinds of coverage’s will be discussed in order to help you understand what you are buying before you start shopping and comparing coverage options.
Trucker Insurance Coverage’s
Auto insurance for businesses has another modernized coverage form that has been designed specifically for truckers who are engaged in the business of transporting goods for others.
It also follows the simplified wording, style and format of a business auto coverage, but with a few modifications and provisions to help shape the big truck insurance to the needs of a trucker.
As an example, the business auto coverage form does not provide liability coverage for the owner of an auto hired or borrowed from an employee by the insured company.
This comparable limitation only refers to the private passenger autos. This means that the policy covers an employee who owns a commercial vehicle and furnishes it to the name insured for used in the trucking business.
This would apply to business that operate as so-called “owner or operators” of large trucks.
Motor Carrier Coverage
The motor carrier coverage form is a variation of traditional truckers coverage developed to reflect certain changes in the motor carrier regulation system.
It has been described as an underwriting alternative for some carriers, and it may provide more appropriate coverage for some insureds but not all, so make sure to review your specific trucking industry.
However, the differences between truckers coverage’s and motor carrier coverage are very minor and very subtle, but it is still good to understand the small details of such a large investment.
This form, however, does not define the actual insurance definition of a”trucker.” Instead, it has the literal definition for motor carrier (a part of the Motor Carrier Act of 1980), which means any person or organization providing transportation by an automobile in the furtherance of a commercial enterprise.
One distinction that can be drawn between this definition and the definition of “trucker” found in the truckers form is that a “trucker” is someone engaged in the business of transporting property or passengers.
California Minimum Liability Insurance
As with the other commercial auto forms, this form has its own set of coverage symbols, so make sure to check to see if your commercial policy except and offers these auto forms for your specific type of vehicle. On the motor carrier coverage form we find some minor variations in working the “who is an insured” section and in the “other insurance” condition.
In many places, the term “motor carrier” appears instead of the word “trucker.” The motor carrier and trucker forms are the same in most ways on your policy. The liability coverage, coverage extensions, and exclusions are the same on most policies.
Trailer interchange coverage and physical damage coverage are the same with both forms. Most of the policy conditions and definitions are the same, which again details how small the differences truly are.
A common category found within this group is companies which act as booking agents for domestic shippers that wish to haul their goods by vehicle.
These Cargo Brokers are like freight forwarders in that they normally do not have an investment in vehicles, but rather less trucks on a per trip basis from someone else who has ICC authority.
Brokers, at times, provide the required filings on shipments and to fulfill the liability coverage portion.
They also may rely upon the contracted owner operator to provide filings and requirements. The difference between brokers and freight forwarders, is that freight forwarders frequently develop long-term relationships with shippers and haulers.
This relationship building often provides packing, warehousing and overseas documentation preparation as part of their services. Brokers on the other hand try to minimize their handling services and will generally use the trucker who will haul at the lowest price.
They also do not usually handle overseas shipments. Here again, you will learn that most carriers do not write brokers because of their lack of control over the exposure of the industry.
This business classification encompasses those accounts that provide hauling services utilizing various kinds of specialized equipment. Many times these companies operate only on a local haul basis, and can be insured with a standard auto policy.
Because of the nature of the commodities hauled by these carriers, most of these accounts are generally written through the excess or specialty market.
A common example of this type of hauler would include dump trucks, sand and gravel operations, logging trucks, mobile home toters, and waste disposal companies or garbage haulers.
This category will encompass those drivers who own their own equipment and haul for either a lager firm or other companies that might contract their services.
As an example, such business operations such as manufactures, mining companies, or public entities. You will also find that the owner operator category contains the largest number of accounts.
Types of Operations
Employed Owner Operators – they are insureds who lease their vehicles on a long-term or permanent basis to larger firms and haul under their ICC and PUC/PUS authorities.
These drivers will usually insure their own rigs for physical damage and non trucking liability, and rely upon the contracting firm’s policy for their for hire liability protection.
Independent Trucking Firms – who operate under their own authority as a small common or contract carrier. These companies normally arrange for all of their own cargo and truck needs.
Gypsies or Wildcatters who lease their tucks on a short-term basis to different transit companies. These drivers act as temporary employees for transit companies or brokers and usually haul under the authority of the company that has hired them.
Another account encompasses those companies that operate larger fleets, which are normally considered as fiver or more vehicles, in conjunction with one or more central shipping and racing terminals and warehouses.
Larger fleet carriers often use leased owner operator vehicles in addition to their own.
Leasing allows these companies to change their hauling capacity almost instantly to meet shipping demands.
Leases can be arranged on a long-term basis or a renewable twenty-nine day trip lease basis which allows fleet carriers to avoid filing the ICC mandated paperwork require for extended lease arrangements.
These contracted owner operators are usually paid on a percentage of the load basis or by the mile. Fleet carriers haul freight in two shipment size classifications. The first entails what is called the less than truckload or LT, service.
This operation is a door to door service for shipments up to ten thousand pounds and can include both general freight delivery companies and small package delivery companies. Such companies can include FedEx or UPS. Actual shipments involve five separate steps:
The initial local pick up of merchandise or materials from manufacturers or other shippers by company pick up and delivery drivers. Sorting and possible storage of merchandise at central terminal or warehouse facilities.
Actual line hauling by long or intermediate distance drivers who are either company employees or contracted owner or operators. Sorting and possible storage at destination terminals, break bulk facilities or warehouses until final shipping.
Local delivery of the products or materials to receivers by company employed pick up and delivery drivers.
Second Category of Fleet
The second category of fleet carrier service is often referred to as truckload or TL service.
The reason being is this type of carrier hauls full loads of single or mixed commodities. These load hauling may or may not include free pick up and delivery service.
Carriers that haul in this manner prefer to handle loads of shipments on a loaded to go bases without terminal handling. A typical general freight line will in fact handle as high as seventy-five percent of their shipments as loaded to go verses dock handled loads.
Moving and Storage Companies
Moving and storage companies is a sizable category of hauler that is often considered a separate and distinct type of operation.
At present there are over thirteen thousand moving and storage companies operating within in the United States.
Strictly speaking, moving and storage companies are common carriers that provide transportation services for household or commercial property on an intrastate, interstate, and international basis.
They differ from most other firms in that many are involved in extensive packing, warehousing, and set up operations in conjunction with their activities done on a daily basis.
Household Good Transportation Act
After the passing of the 1980 Household Good Transportation Act, moving companies were permitted to sell first party coverage directly to sippers.
Until then, this had been a forbidden transaction on most interstate shipments, although it was permitted by a number of state agencies.
The modern-day network of local agents and independent carriers that make up this industry was started by national carriers to provide a source for return loads on their long distance moves to eliminate expensive heading of empty trucks.
Over the years, the role of these networks has grown and now provides a source for labor and destination services in addition to return loads.
Local and Independent Agents
All local agents and independents generate income from their own moving and storage business in conjunction with their national van lines related activities.
As with other contracted owner and operators, when the agent is operating on behalf of the nation carrier, transportation insurance exposures are normally picked up under the national carriers policy.
When the independent is operating on his own behalf, he will usually assume the liability under his own program. Even though the operations of individual agent or independent carriers vary, most act in a multitude of capacities.
One capacity is the booking agent is responsible for handling the initial paper work for the requested move. It is at this stage that the mover will meet with the customer to review the goods that are to be shipped and generate a price quote.
The cost of the move will depend on the nature and wight of the load, miles traveled and services provided.
Agent of Origin
This type of agent is responsible for the scheduling, packing and loading of the shipment from the original place of departure. It is here that the goods are packed and a bill of lading is given to the customer that identities the degree of the mover’s liability.
The values that are to used for the shipment is considered in this process.
This type of agent is responsible for the actual moving of the customer’s goods. These agents are responsible for making all necessary ICC, PUC or other state filings.
The Agent of Destination and Storage
This type of agent is responsible for the unloading of the shipment and for providing any other services that might be required by the customer in conjunction with the move.
What is important to note about this category of drivers is that sever carriers have recognized the unique exposures of moving and storage companies.
They have designed specialized programs for these establishments.
In fact, many of the companies who do insure these accounts will require that they limit their radius of operations to less than two hundred miles and provide all of the above mentioned services to qualify for their programs.
If you need help shopping cheap auto insurance companies or just need trucker insurance in California, regardless if you live in Orange County CA or Los Angeles CA, than contact us.
Regardless if you buy from us, we can help walk you through the trucker insurance process and California State Fillings process for the cheapest auto insurance in California!
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