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How to Get Commercial Truck Insurance for New Drivers

Caucasian Trucker in His 40s Inside Vintage Aged Semi Truck Tractor Cabin. Transportation Industry.

If you recently started your own trucking business, you’re probably eager to hit the road and start earning a living doing what you love. If you’re like most people, the last thing you want to do is sift through mountains of paperwork trying to find the right insurance policy.

We get it, commercial trucking insurance can sometimes seem complicated. That’s why we set out to make commercial trucking insurance easy to understand so you can focus on the things you do best – driving and earning. Here are a few questions you may be asking as a new driver:

How Does Commercial Trucking Insurance Work?

Accidents happen. If you get into an accident while driving a company vehicle, you will be glad to have insurance. You purchase insurance by paying what is known as your premium, usually paid monthly.

If you or a driver employed by your business causes an accident that results in property damage or injury, the person who sustained the damage can file a claim against you. Think of a claim as “that person’s legal demand for compensation from you.” [2] 

Liability coverage will cover damages up to the amount listed on your policy. You may have a deductible, which is the amount of money you’ll have to pay towards a claim before your insurance covers the rest. Deductibles are separate from your monthly premium and are only paid when there is a claim.

What Does Commercial Trucking Insurance Cover?

Similar to other types of auto insurance, commercial trucking insurance covers liability damage, physical damage, medical expenses, and more depending on your policy.

You may be wondering why you need commercial trucking insurance if you already have insurance for your car. Simply put, yes. And it’s the law. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that all interstate drivers be insured up to $500,000, and each state has its own minimum requirements as well.

Not only is it required by law, but it will also save you in the long run from having to pay out of pocket should you get in an accident (whether it’s your fault or not.)

Some of the most common types of coverage on a commercial trucking policy are as follows:

  • Automobile Liability
  • General Liability
  • Bobtail
  • Cargo
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist

This is not an exhaustive list; if you would like to go deeper into each type of coverage, check out our blog: Insurance for Commercial Truckers: What to Look For in Your Policy.

How Do I Purchase Commercial Trucking Insurance?

You can get commercial trucking insurance through an independent agent. [1] They live and breathe insurance and will be a valuable resource for you if you are just starting out. They will also be the experts to guide you through the claims process should you ever get into an accident.

Your agent will walk you through every step to getting a new insurance policy. They will also take the time to understand your business needs to ensure you have the coverage that fits best, without overpaying.

How Much Does Commercial Trucking Insurance Cost?

Generally, most commercial trucking policies cost anywhere from $8,000 to $14,000 in premium per year, but premiums depend on a number of factors, including:

  • Risk (such as the type of freight you haul)
  • Your driving record
  • Amount of coverage
  • Age of driver

Some of the best, lowest-cost insurers may require the use of dual-facing dash cams which can not only reduce the amount you pay in premium but can often prove that you were not at fault in the event of an accident. Being exonerated ensures a quicker claim completion, and can also benefit your CDL driving record.

We hope you found this article helpful. If you want to explore which coverage options are right for you, ask your insurance agent to contact us for more information.

Sources:

[1] https://www.travelers.com/small-business-insurance/auto/commercial-auto-insurance-101 

[2] https://www.rosenbaumnylaw.com/resources/whats-the-difference-between-a-claim-and-a-lawsuit/

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