Non Trucking Liability Insurance 101: Here’s What You Need to Know

The nature of the trucking business is very difficult. Truckers spend a lot of time every day behind the wheel, dropping off some really big and important loads from one place to another. Additionally, the job carries great responsibility and pressure. Because of this, non trucking liability insurance is mandatory.

However, as a business owner or a driver, you might still have some questions about non trucking liability coverage. In this article, we will cover all the important topics you should know about before you purchase non trucking liability insurance. 

Big blue truck parked in a parking lot.

What is Non Trucking Liability Insurance?

Non trucking liability insurance is defined as a liability that covers your business truck that you use for personal use as well. Because you are not driving the vehicle for business purposes only, your truck cannot be covered under your trucker’s liability or business auto policy. 

Non trucking liability also covers business owners on a day off. The motor carriers usually provide truck insurance only when the truck is used for work purposes, and due to their commercial nature, they don’t cover personal use without purchasing additional insurance coverage. 

What Does Non Trucking Liability Insurance Cover?

There are many benefits when it comes to non trucking liability coverage, including bodily injury and property damage during personal or non-business use. Non trucking insurance also provides protection for truckers against potential lawsuits from accidents and they can help cover any medical bills. 

What Non Trucking Liability Insurance Cover Doesn’t Cover

Non trucking liability insurance doesn’t provide coverage for business purposes or when the driver is hauling any type of cargo. Business purposes include:

  • Fueling up
  • Traveling for maintenance
  • Traveling to vehicle servicing
  • Driving to and from terminal
  • Driving during layovers
  • Driving without a cargo
  • Washing your truck

Also, non trucking liability coverage doesn’t apply when you are operating on behalf of a trucking company or if you are using a vehicle for any other purpose that generates revenue. Instead, these activities are covered by primary trucking liability insurance. 

Non Trucking Liability Coverage Checklist

Who Needs Non Trucking Liability Insurance?

In case you are wondering whether or not you need non trucking insurance, this information will help you make a good decision:

You Need Non Trucking Liability Insurance When:

  • You are driving your truck for personal purposes
  • You are required to carry the insurance by your motor carrier
  • You want to avoid huge liability expenses that result from an accident

You Don’t Need Non Trucking Liability Insurance When:

  • You want to insure the goods you transport. In some cases, the policy includes bobtailing or driving without physical damage coverage. 

What Is the Difference Between Bobtail and Non Trucking Insurance?

Non trucking liability insurance is sometimes referred to as bobtail insurance, which is incorrect. It’s important to remember that bobtail is not the same thing as non trucking liability. 

Non trucking liability coverage will pay for property damages and bodily injuries in case of an accident when the driver is not driving the truck for business purposes. The policy can be applied with or without a trailer and it is typically in the form of an endorsement on a commercial insurance policy.

On the other hand, bobtail insurance is similar to non trucking liability and it covers the truck driver when operating the vehicle without a trailer. This is also known as bobtailing. Bobtail insurance provides coverage whenever the tractor isn’t attached to the trailer, regardless of whether or not the truck is operating under dispatch. 

What is the Difference Between Owner-Operated and For-Hire Coverage?

Auto liability policies can be crafted differently, depending on the specific needs of a company. That said, there are different policies for owner-operated and for-hire insurance. Both policy types are beneficial when combined with non trucking liability coverage to add another layer of protection for your business. 

Owner-Operated Coverage

If an owner-operator is leased onto a motor carrier, they are typically covered under auto liability insurance from their company. In this case, the owner-operator should also be aware that this policy can only be applied to a load or for business purposes. Owner-operated coverage can cover third-party injuries or damaged property in case the driver is held liable. 

For-Hire Coverage

As for for-hire coverage, insurance companies usually provide coverage for permanently leased independent contractors, for example primary liability insurance coverage. However, contractors may also need to buy additional insurance coverage as well. 

Contractors also need to verify with their motor carriers whether other types of coverage, such as bobtail coverage or physical truck insurance, are needed as an addition to basic forms of their insurance policies because they may need to add non trucking liability to cover all their needs. 

How Much Does Non-Trucking Liability Insurance Cost?

Non trucking liability insurance is not as broad as other insurance policies, which is one of the reasons why these premiums are usually cheap. Usually, non trucking liability coverage costs $29-$50 per month. Business owners who need non trucking liability insurance often need to get physical damage insurance as well. 

What is Physical Damage Insurance?

Physical damage insurance can help you cover the truck repairs in case that the vehicle is damaged in a collision with another vehicle. Two types of trucking coverage include collision and comprehensive insurance. Comprehensive truck insurance covers a wider range of damage. 

Do I Need Non Trucking Liability Insurance for my Trucking Company?

Non trucking liability insurance provides coverage that can help protect businesses and truck drivers from the financial aftermath of different types of accidents. When thinking about purchasing a cheaper type of insurance policy for truck drivers, it’s always a good idea to think first about the type of coverage you need. Secondly, you should shop around and compare prices before you make the final decision. Although non trucking liability insurance is one of the cheapest policies, you should talk to your insurance agent and check whether they can craft the offer that will suit your specific needs. 

Did you find this article about the ways to protect your truck while not working useful? If you did, you might also want to read more about how to protect your 18 wheeler!