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Why is my Operating Authority status showing as “Not Authorized”?

When you’re waiting for your operating authority to be completed, you can check your status online to see where you are in the process. One typical message new applicants often see is “not authorized”. This is often a cause for considerable alarm. Thankfully, there is a reasonable explanation for this code. Learn more about your FMCSA status and what the “not authorized” code means below.

Why does my operating authority say “not authorized”?

Your operating authority number is an essential part of your lineup of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration requirements and is needed to legally operate your trucking business. You should know your operating authority number and keep it handy. If your FMCSA operating authority number is showing as “not authorized” it is most likely because your application is still being processed. That’s all. You might just be playing a bit of a waiting game until the application is processed and everything is all set.

This is by far the most common scenario, and it happens when you have filed for your operating authority and completed all steps of the process, but the issuing agency is not yet finished with your application. If you are a new applicant and provided all needed information, including proof of insurance, then you are likely just awaiting confirmation that your application is complete.

Once the agency is finished, your status will update on its own. Processing times vary and are dependent on the number of applications filed in a given time period and on internal timing and details. Unfortunately, there is little you can do to speed things along. The best thing to do is to check your status each day until it updates.

“Not Authorized” vs. Suspended

Now, “Not Authorized” is not the same thing as “Suspended” when you’re looking at your operating authority status.

The actual message you are seeing matters when it comes to your operating authority. The explanations and suggestions above apply to businesses that are awaiting processing. If your operating authority status is showing as “Suspended” it means you may need to take action on your side to have your operating authority reinstated.

It is important to note the exact message you are getting since “unauthorized” often simply means you are simply awaiting the finalization and processing of your application – and that you do not have to do anything at all. Other messages, including “suspended” mean you may need to take some action before you can be reinstated.

Checking on your operating authority status after you’ve completed all application steps is a good idea. Keep an eye on your status and make sure that you take the necessary steps to have your operating authority be good to go.

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