ICC Truck Permits – Basic Guidelines

Let me first explain a bit about the Interstate Commerce Commission (or ICC).

To allow the trucking industry transport regulated commodities across state borders, the federal government created the ICC. To activate the ICC Truck Permit and maintain its validity, each authority needed to file an insurance claim. All filings must be made under a commercial auto policy. The trucker’s financial responsibility was shown by the insurance filing. $750,000 is the minimum limit. CSL (combined single limit). Limits for hazardous commodities range from $1,000,000. The limit for hazardous commodities can be anywhere from $1,000,000.00 to $5,000,000.00. CSL varies depending on the material being transported.

The ICC regulated the types of manufactured goods that truckers could transport on which highways. One trucker might be authorized to transport lumber along the Interstate 40 corridor from Las Vegas, NV, to Los Angeles, CA. A different trucker could haul lumber from Phoenix, AZ, to Los Angeles, CA along the Interstate 10, but his customer required lumber to be moved from Las Vegas, NV to Los Angeles. He would need permission from another trucker because he didn’t have the authority to haul that route. The feds set regulations about which routes truckers could use to transport specific manufactured goods. You can see that pieces of authority with broad product restrictions, granting authority to haul on highly populated routes, were very valuable. However, unregulated commodities such as produce, feed and cotton, could be hauled wherever anyone wanted and didn’t require an ICC permit. This created problems for the public and the federal government, as well as state governments regarding who was using which roads. Truckers began to lease their authority to other truckers in order to operate favorable routes. Soon, it became difficult to determine who was responsible for damages or goods being transported. It took a lot of time to determine who was responsible in court. This led to states mandating permits to truckers to travel on their roads.

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This system was created to address some of the issues with the old system. It allows more truckers to transport larger commodities on previously restricted routes. The Motor Carrier Act of 80 was the result of this process, which was known as deregulation.

The law established five basic guidelines for ICC Truck Permits. To be able to use the truckers authority, each must have an insurance file filed by the feds.

1) Common Carrier

Common Carrier is authorized to haul regulated commodities. It must also file tariffs (rates to transport goods). This authority was more common in the early days of deregulation, when tariffs were not required.

2) Contract Carrier

Contract Carriers are authorized to transport regulated commodities, but they did not post tariffs. Contracts were instead used to do business directly with customers. Because it is easy to use, this authority is the most popular.

3) Private Carrier

Private carriers are allowed to transport regulated products.

4) Brokers

Brokers are authorized to load regulated commodities onto motor carriers with an ICC Truck permit. Brokers do not have to file a liability filing. They must post a $10,000 bond. Bond that guarantees payment to truckers regulated for hauled loads

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5) Freight Forwarders

This authority permits the docking of freight from one regulated carrier to loading it on another. A general liability policy is required for the insurance filing. It is not permissible to transport freight to only dock and load on another carrier.

This description is only an outline. After twenty-five years of working in truck insurance, I discovered that no one is an expert. You can see my blog and the information below to find out what I am up to.