Hot Shot Trucking Insurance Requirements (2023 Update)

Thang Truong
Thang Truong
Updated on:

Have you heard the term hot shot trucking? If so, you know hot shot truckers require commercial truck insurance to maintain their business. What is hot shot trucking, and what are the insurance requirements for hot shot trucking? 

What is hot shot trucking? 

Hot shot trucking is a branch of the trucking industry specializing in time-sensitive loads. These loads consist of materials that must be delivered within a specific time frame to avoid issues within the business. The origin of “hot shot” can be found in the history of Texas oilfields, where pickups were used to deliver parts to drilling sites as soon as possible in the 70s. 

What are hot shot trucking insurance requirements?

Hot shot truckers are required to carry the insurance coverage their state requires. They also must carry insurance required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) if they haul cargo across state lines. Brokers and shippers may also have requirements for the trucker’s insurance coverage. 

Typically, those coverages include the following: 

Usually, if the plan is to travel across state lines, drivers will likely need a commercial driver’s license (CDL) from their state, a DOT number, and a Motor Carrier number. Their truck insurance coverage also has to meet the FMCSA requirements, which varies by the types of cargo they haul. It is usually between $750,000 or $1MM minimum liability coverage.

If you are interested in comparing hot shot trucking insurance quotes from several leading trucking insurance companies to find the cheapest one for you, consider the providers we recommend below:

What does hot shot trucking insurance cover? 

Hot shot trucking insurance is designed to protect you and your truck if there is an accident or another kind of loss. It is protection for your business. Cargo or freight you haul is also covered. 

These are some of the coverages you can expect. 

  • Damage to your vehicle—truck and trailer: If the vehicle is vandalized, stolen, damaged in a fire, or damaged in a collision, the coverage will pay repair or replacement costs. Sometimes, the coverage will pay for downtime until the truck is back in use. Learn more at the best trucking physical damage insurance and the trailer coverage.
  • Damage to other property: If you cause an accident that damages another vehicle or property, the insurance will help cover repair or replacement costs. Learn more at trucking liability coverage.
  • Injury to other people: If you cause an accident that leads to someone being injured, your coverage will pay their medical bills, lost wages, and some other expenses. 
  • Legal fees: If someone sues you because of an accident or damage you caused, liability coverage can help cover your legal costs. 
  • Damaged or lost cargo: This coverage handles the costs of replacing freight or cargo damaged or lost during transport or an accident. Some policies will also compensate your client if you can’t deliver cargo due to an accident or issue with your truck. Learn more at the best motor truck cargo insurance companies.

Each hot shot trucking business is different. How much coverage you need depends on your state, what your freight is worth, how often you drive carrying hot shot loads, and other factors. Find an insurance company that can customize your policy to meet the needs and specifications of your business. 

Who needs hot shot trucking insurance? 

Truckers who specialize in expedited transportation of goods need hot shot trucking insurance. You may have heard the term expediter’s insurance in the place of hot shot insurance. This insurance is for truckers who carry small loads and travel short distances for time-sensitive deliveries. The customer usually needs the freight quickly, so they hire hot shot truckers to complete the job. 

How much does hot shot trucking insurance cost? 

The cost for hot shot trucking insurance is variable. The main variables are how much coverage you need, the location of your business, as well as a few other factors.

Generally, hot shot trucking insurance costs range from around $6,000 to $12,000 annually for each truck. 

The average cost of hot shot trucking insurance for each truck is $9,796 per year. That includes most hot shot trucking coverage. Below is the breakdown of average costs for different coverages:

Hot shot trucking insurance coveragesAverage costs
Trucking primary liability insurance$5,210 per year
Non-trucking liability insurance$540 per year
Trucking physical damage insurance$2,500 per year
Truck cargo insurance$1,546 per year

Keep in mind that these are just the averages. Your rates will be different. Be sure to shop around with a few companies to compare several quotes to choose the cheapest one for you.

Learn more at hot shot trucking insurance cost.

Average hot shot trucking insurance cost per month 

The average cost of hot shot trucking insurance is $816 per month. Different coverages cost differently. Below are the breakdown of average costs per month for different coverages (for one truck).

Hot shot trucking insurance coveragesAverage costs
Trucking primary liability insurance$434 per month
Non-trucking liability insurance$45 per month
Trucking physical damage insurance$208 per month
Truck cargo insurance$129 per month

Factors that impact hot shot trucking insurance cost

Factors that could impact the cost of hot shot trucking insurance include: 

  • The coverages you select and how much coverage you need. Additional coverages lead to other costs. 
  • Credit score: A better credit rating leads to better insurance rates. 
  • The deductible you choose: A higher deductible leads to lower costs.
  • The truck: The vehicle’s age, make, model, and class help determine your costs.
  • Driving experience: An experienced truck driver will have lower rates than someone just getting started. 

The last factor that plays a role in the cost of hot shot trucking insurance is the company you select for your insurance coverage. Each company has its own policies for setting rates. They also offer different coverages, so comparing rates from multiple providers is essential. 

Best hot shot trucking insurance companies

Hundreds of insurance companies offer commercial truck insurance. However, only some specializes in hot shot trucking insurance. We have researched these companies carefully and here are our recommendations of the best hot shot trucking insurance companies for your consideration:

  • Progressive: Best Overall as the leader in commercial truck insurance
  • Simply Business: Best for comparing several quotes
  • biBERK: Best for affordable hot shot trucking insurance
  • The Hartford: Best with its 200+ years of experience in insuring small businesses
  • Best for working with knowledgeable agents
  • InsurePro: Best for short term or pay-per-day coverage

The Takeaway

Hot shot trucking insurance is for those truckers who make expedited runs with small loads. Their customers need their deliveries in a timely fashion and often use truckers who use a pickup and a trailer for transportation. Hot shot truckers are required to meet both state and federal insurance requirements.

Thang Truong

Thang Truong covers small business insurance and small business success at BravoPolicy. He is a licensed P&C insurance agent. Previously, he held product leadership positions at, Capital One, NerdWallet, and Mulberry Technology. He holds a MBA degree from UC Berkeley - Haas School of Business.

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