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Trucking Coverage FAQs

What Coverage Do You Need For Your Trucking Business


1. Vehicle liability insurance

Vehicle liability insurance has two components always included together: Bodily Injury

coverage and Property Damage coverage.

Vehicle liability insurance is the basic insurance coverage that covers injuries or

damage to other people or property if you’re at fault for an accident.

If you cause an accident that injures or even kills another person, the Bodily Injury (BI)

portion of your Liability insurance will pay for the related expenses. Bodily Injury (BI) will

cover hospital and medical bills, rehabilitation, long-term nursing care, funeral

expenses, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and other expenses, up to the limits you


If you cause an accident that damages another person’s property, the Property Damage

(PD) portion of your Liability insurance will pay for the related expenses. Property

Damage (PD) will cover the expense to repair or replace damaged items, including

other vehicles, lamp posts, houses or even a pet, up to the limits you select.

Liability insurance also will pay for your legal defense costs if you are sued as a result of

your involvement with the accident.

Who needs liability insurance?

Anyone who drives a vehicle needs Liability insurance. In most situations, Liability

insurance is required by law.

2. Motor Truck Cargo Insurance

Motor Truck Cargo insurance (Cargo) provides insurance on the freight or commodity hauled by a

For-hire trucker. It covers your liability for cargo that is lost or damaged due to causes such as fire,

collision, or striking of a load.

Who needs motor truck cargo insurance?

A growing number of risk managers require truckers to insure their cargo. You can meet that requirement

with Motor Truck Cargo Insurance. It pays when you are responsible for damage to or loss of the cargo

due to fire, collision or even hitting or running over the cargo that you transport on behalf of a client.

Limits, deductibles, and other details

When you select Motor Truck Cargo insurance, you have to select a limit for your coverage. This limit

determines the maximum amount your insurance company will pay for damaged or destroyed cargo. You

also need to choose a deductible. A deductible is the amount you agree to pay out of pocket when you

have a claim. Choosing a higher deductible is an easy way to lower the price of your insurance, but be

sure you choose a deductible that you can afford to pay out of pocket at any time.

3. Workers Compensation vs. Occupational Accident Coverage

What Is Workers Compensation?

Workers Comp is a state-regulated and state-mandated insurance which covers costs

associated with a worker’s injury on the job. This can include medical bills, lost wages,

legal fees, and ongoing care after an injury. It’s the employee’s responsibility to submit a

claim for coverage, which may be done at the time of the accident or after the fact. Each

state has different laws surrounding Workers Comp limits and qualifying factors.

Employers are typically required to carry a Workers Comp policy if they have a certain

number of employees or if the employees work more than a certain number of hours per

week- laws vary by state. Workers Compensation policies are more expensive than

Occ/Acc, since the coverage limit is determined by state laws and not the employer’s


What Is Occupational Accident Insurance?

Occupational Accident insurance provides more limited coverage than Workers Comp,

and therefore is less expensive than Workers Comp. Occ/Acc covers medical bills, lost

wages, and death benefits when a worker is injured on the job. Policy holders are able

to select the amount of coverage they want based on perceived risk.

Occ/Acc can bridge the gap between full-time employees covered under a state’s

Workers Comp laws, and owner-operators leased on to motor carriers. Owner-operators

are considered to be independent contractors and are therefore not covered by most

Workers Comp laws. They do, however, have the right to pursue legal action in the case

of an injury. Selecting an Occ/Acc policy with sufficient coverage helps to protect

trucking companies against legal action, but will not cover associated legal fees like

Workers Comp would.

When deciding which policy is right for you, consider the following questions:

  • Are your workers full-time employees or independent contractors?
  • How expensive is Workers Comp in your state?
  • Does your state allow you to provide either Workers Comp coverage or Occ/Acc?
  • Which option would be less expensive?
  • Does the lower cost of Occ/Acc outweigh the potential legal costs of a lawsuit?

As always, the agents at PillarIA are available to help you determine which policy will

provide the best coverage for your insurance needs. Make sure you get the best policy

for the best price- contact us today!

Get OAI Quote

Get Workers Comp Quote

Contingent Liability


As a motor carrier you need to ask yourself:

Q: How do I protect myself against an independent owner operator who sues me for workers

compensation claiming to be a full-time employee?

A: You need Motor Carrier Contingent Liability Insurance.

Q: What is Motor Carrier Contingent Liability Insurance?

A: Simply, if an independent owner operator semi driver who carries cargo for you tries to collect

workers compensation from your policy, contingent liability insurance helps you defend your lease

agreement and also your cost if the owner operator is successful in his claim.




As a motor carrier who leases on independent owner-operator semi truck drivers to carry cargo, it

appears obvious they are not a full time employee of yours.

But sometimes things happen that change the dynamic. For instance, what if the owner operator

has an accident , is injured and can’t work? That semi truck driver might decide to sue you for

workers compensation, claiming they are a full time employee of your trucking company.

You think there’s no chance a court or arbitrator will side with the independent semi driver. But

consider an independent contractor supposedly does all the following things:

  • Drives for other motor carriers
  • Uses his own semi truck, tools, and equipment
  • Hires and pays assistants
  • Sets his own work schedule
  • Makes profits or suffer losses
  • Has a registered business license

If any one of these are proven not to be true, a court or arbitrator could side with the semi driver

and force you to pay worker’s compensation.

FedEx learned the hard way about this issue. In 2014, the 9th Circuit Court in California ruled that

2,300 independent semi drivers were in fact FedEx employees and entitled to workers

compensation benefits. The ruling cost the company millions.

This is why you want to buy Motor Carrier Contingent Liability Insurance.



Experienced truckers know they have to be prepared for any event that could put their

commercial truck and their livelihood out of commission. That includes everything from

an accident to fire, foul weather, theft to vandalism.

The best way to be prepared for the unexpected is to make sure you’re covered with

Physical Damage Insurance. This trucking insurance, which is offered by the trucking

insurance experts at pillaria.com, protects your truck and trailer 24/7 and helps get you

back on the road.


  • Fire or explosion
  • Theft
  • Windstorm, hail, earthquake, flood
  • Vandalism and more
  • Damage caused by collision with another object
  • Deductible options range from $500 – $5,000

When you consider buying Physical Damage Semi Insurance, there are a number of

add-on options to choose from. They include:

  • Towing- usually included as a sub-limit
  • Storage- usually included as a sub-limit
  • GAP coverage- can pay off loan if your truck is totaled and the appraised value is less than the payoff amount
  • Federal Excise Tax coverage- if loss occurs within one year of date of purchase, the tax amount will be reimbursed
  • Personal effects coverage- can be added to cover personal items kept in commercial vehicle
  • Electronic equipment coverage- can be added to provide coverage to electronic items that are permanently mounted in commercial vehicle
  • Downtime/Rental reimbursement- can be added to provide coverage if covered loss results in use of vehicle being lost for more than 7 day

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