A commercial truck driver has significant responsibility for maintaining safe operations on the road. The driver is controlling a large, heavy vehicle that can cause extensive damage to both property and person. Therefore, a commercial truck driver must take responsibility for taking appropriate insurance coverage seriously.
Insurance requirements for commercial trucks are more extensive than those for a private vehicle out on a road trip. Each state has its requirements for truckers within the state, and there are requirements for those who travel between states. What are the requirements in Florida? Let’s find out.
- Florida intrastate commercial truck insurance requirements
- Interstate commercial truck insurance requirements for Florida truck drivers
- Do different kinds of trucks have different requirements in Florida?
- Are truck insurance requirements different for Florida owner-operators than for those working for a company?
- Best commercial truck insurance companies in Florida
Florida intrastate commercial truck insurance requirements
When a truck driver only operates within the boundaries of Florida, they are said to be an intrastate trucker. If the truck is over 26,000 GVW, drivers must carry an intrastate USDOT number. Minimum insurance requirements are different for intrastate truckers than they are for those who cross state borders.
Those minimums vary depending on the cargo that is transported. For example, a truck driver who transports oil must carry a minimum of $1,000,000. Hazmat truckers must carry a minimum of $5,000,000 in liability insurance. Household goods transport requires $300,000 of minimum liability coverage, and general freight transportation requires $750,000 minimum coverage.
Florida also has a requirement that all registered vehicles maintain a $10,000 Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy along with at least $10,000 property damage liability. There are multiple other options available, but these are the bare minimums.
Interstate commercial truck insurance requirements for Florida truck drivers
Any commercial truck driver that crosses state lines is considered an interstate trucker whether they start in Florida and travel across the state line or they originate elsewhere and enter Florida. When a trucker crosses state lines, they must meet regulations that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set. Current FMCSA commercial insurance minimums depend on both the weight of the truck and the freight being hauled. These are the current minimums that apply based on FMCSA regulations.
- A truck under 10,001 pounds carrying non-hazardous freight: $300,000
- A truck over 10,001 pounds carrying non-hazardous cargo: $750,000
- For-hire and private carriers transporting oil: $1,000,000
- Hazardous materials other than oil: $5,000,000
Keep in mind that these are minimum liability coverages. These represent the least amount of coverage you can have and still operate legally. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t have other coverages as well.
Do different kinds of trucks have different requirements in Florida?
Hot shot trucking, box trucks, semi-trucks, and towing all assume different risks. That’s the reasons why they have different insurance requirements. Moreover, different states may have different insurance requirements for different types of trucks too.
Hot shot trucking insurance requirements in Florida
Hot shot trucking, for example, transports small loads that need to be expedited quickly. Typically, hot shot truckers must maintain a minimum of $750,000 in liability coverage per FMCSA guidelines. Florida doesn’t require different insurance coverage and different limits for hot shot truckers. Learn more about hot shot trucking insurance requirements.
If you are looking for hot shot trucking insurance in Florida, learn more at our other articles on this topic: the best hot shot trucking insurance companies and hot shot trucking insurance cost
Box truck insurance requirements in Florida
Box trucks deliver anything from food to household goods to machine parts. Typical box truck insurance coverages include liability and physical damage coverages. On occasion, the motor carrier will pay for liability coverage. However, the box truck driver must still cover other insurance coverages like motor truck cargo insurance and non-trucking liability insurance. Florida box truck insurance requirements are similar to other states. Learn more at box truck insurance requirements.
If you are looking for box truck insurance in Florida, learn more at our other articles on this topic: the best box truck insurance companies and box truck insurance cost
Tow truck insurance requirements in Florida
Tow trucks are a special case when it comes to commercial truck insurance. The driver or company must provide insurance that covers both the tow truck and the vehicle that is being towed. Risks for tow truck drivers are more significant than those for other professions.
Tow trucks in Florida must have combined single-limit commercial liability insurance ranging from $50,000 to $30,000, depending on weight. In addition, on hook (in tow), storage, commercial auto personal injury, PIP, garage keepers, and garage liability coverages are required.
If you are looking for tow truck insurance in Florida, learn more at our other articles on this topic: the best tow truck insurance companies in Florida and tow truck insurance cost.
Dump truck insurance requirements in Florida
Dump truck operations have their own risks and exposure. Florida doesn’t require additional insurance coverage for dump trucks other than the standard commercial truck insurance coverage. However, you should consider having trucking general liability insurance, even this is not required in Florida, since dump truck operations are more likely to cause personal injuries and property damages in their operational sites.
If you are looking for dump truck insurance in Florida, learn more at our other articles on this topic: the best dump truck insurance companies in Florida and dump truck insurance costs.
Are truck insurance requirements different for Florida owner-operators than for those working for a company?
Owner-operators are responsible for all minimum coverage requirements. The exception is if you lease to a motor truck carrier. Sometimes, the motor truck carrier will cover your liability, but you must provide other coverages.
The FMCSA requires that commercial fleets have fleet insurance when they apply for operating authority. Most shippers and brokers require higher coverage than the FMCSA. Some clients impose their own insurance limits on trucking companies.
The main difference is that those who work for someone else usually have insurance coverage provided for them. Owner-operators are responsible for providing their own insurance coverage. If you lease with a motor truck carrier, you are still responsible for your own coverage unless the motor truck carrier chooses to cover liability coverage.
If you are a truck owner operator in Florida and looking for insurance coverage, learn more at our other articles on this topic: the best truck owner operator insurance companies and truck owner operator insurance cost
Best commercial truck insurance companies in Florida
Tens, if not hundreds, of insurance companies offer commercial truck insurance for Florida truckers and trucking businesses. Commercial truck insurance is quite expensive and a significant expense in any trucking business operation. We have researched more than 30 companies and here are our recommendations for the top providers of commercial truck insurance in Florida for your consideration.
- InsurePro: Best for the innovative only-pay-when-you-drive coverage
- Progressive: Best Overall
- Simply Business: Best for comparing several quotes
- biBERK: Best for low-cost coverage from a reputable company
- Sentry: Best for specializing in commercial insurance
- THREE: A comprehensive trucking business insurance policy at an affordable rate
- Commercialinsurance.net: Best for connecting you with knowledgeable agents
All commercial truck drivers must carry specific minimum limits for liability. In Florida, drivers are also required to have PIP insurance. Different types of trucks require insurance that is specific to their particular industry. Towing, in particular, is a high-risk segment of the trucking industry and requires specialized insurance. For specific insurance requirements for your niche in the trucking industry, check with your insurance agent or broker.
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