What kind of insurance do owner-operators need?

If you are one of the more than 350,000 owner-operators in the United States, then your truck is your livelihood. That is why you want to be sure that it is protected with the right insurance coverage. Choosing the right truck insurance is the best way to protect your business and your investment.

There are several different types of 18 wheeler insurance coverages that owner-operators can choose from. They range from rental reimbursement to auto liability insurance. The exact coverage that you need will depend on several different factors, including whether or not you are operating under your own authority or under a motor carrier. Here is a closer look at the different types of insurance for owner-operators.

Operating Under Own Authority

If you are operating under your own authority, then you will need a greater range of big rig insurance coverage. You might consider the following types of insurance:

  • Auto liabilityAuto liability coverage pays for damages that you do to other persons’ property (or other people) in an at-fault accident. It can help cover the cost of repairing or replacing the other driver’s car and it can cover their medical expenses. Most shippers and brokers require $1 million in primary liability coverage. The minimum amount required by the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration is $750,000.
  • Physical damage – Just having liability insurance isn’t enough if you are an owner-operator. You need insurance to cover your investment. Physical damage insurance includes collision coverage and comprehensive coverage. If you rear-end someone and damage your truck, collision insurance can help you repair it. Comprehensive covers damages that arise from things like fire, vandalism, and theft.
  • Motor truck cargo – When you are operating under your own authority, you are responsible for the cargo, which is why you need motor truck cargo insurance. This coverage will pay for damages to your cargo. As long as the damages are related to a covered event, your cargo is protected.

Operating Under Carrier Authority

If you are operating under a carrier authority, then your insurance coverages will be a little different. For instance, you may not have to worry about liability insurance. That is often covered by the motor carrier. However, you will need some additional coverages. Here are some coverages that you need to have when operating under a carrier authority.

  • Bobtail insurance – If you ever operate your truck without a trailer, then you need bobtail insurance. This coverage protects you in between loads or when you are driving home after dropping off your load.
  • Non-Trucking liabilityNon-Trucking liability insurance is similar to bobtail liability, but it is not the same. This insurance provides coverage when you are driving your truck off the clock.
  • Collision and comprehensive – This insurance covers physical damage to your truck that results from an accident or covered event.

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For more information about truck insurance, contact us today. You can fill out our online quote form or give us a call. We can help you shop for your 18 wheeler insurance so you can get great big rig coverage at a great rate.

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