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What insurance coverage do I need to get my truck tags?

The Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in every state requires both personal and commercial vehicles to obtain truck tags for license plates on an annual basis. The amount that drivers must pay for these truck tags depends on several factors, including age and type of the vehicle. Just as drivers of personal vehicles must prove they have minimum liability insurance, the same is true of commercial truckers. You will need to demonstrate that you have primary liability coverage to drive a commercial truck as required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

What is primary liability insurance for commercial truckers?

Primary liability insurance is a mandatory policy intended to protect the driving public. It will pay for property or bodily damage that you cause to another motorist or passenger with your truck. It is basic and limited to provide only the minimal amount of protection as required by law. That means it does not cover any damage that you sustain, regardless of whether you were at fault or not. You will need a different type of coverage if you desire coverage for yourself, your truck, or the cargo you haul.

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Don’t confuse primary liability insurance with general liability insurance.

When you need to get your tags, you are probably in a hurry to meet the insurance requirements so you can receive them without delay. Unfortunately, truckers sometimes confuse the primary liability coverage they must have with general liability insurance. Although it is an easy mistake to make, the two are very different.

Primary liability insurance only kicks in when you cause property or bodily injury while driving. General liability insurance, on the other hand, covers off-road damages. For example, a client could slip and fall at your trucking headquarters and suffer serious injuries. He or she may then sue the trucking company for damages, which it would then turn over to the company handling the general liability insurance policy for payment.

Minimum policy requirements and the consequences of driving without primary insurance.

The FMCSA sets the minimum coverage requirements for all primary liability policies. This is typically $750,000 for trucks with a gross combination weight rating (GCWR) of over 10,000 pounds. However, it is common for brokers to require one million dollars in coverage. You will also need at least million-dollar coverage if you are an auto hauler and up to five million dollars in coverage if you routinely haul hazardous materials.

Besides the inability to obtain your truck tags, driving without the minimum amount of required primary liability insurance can subject you to large fines and potentially the loss or cancellation of your commercial driver’s license.

Work with our team to get the coverage you need.

There is no doubt that primary liability insurance can be expensive. We are here to help you compare several policies and choose the best one to meet the requirement to obtain your tags. Contact us at 678-271-3449 or complete this online form to get the quote process started. We look forward to working with you and helping you save as much money as possible.