When an owner-operator is leased to a motor carrier, they are typically covered under the trucking company’s auto liability insurance. It is important that the owner-operator understands this coverage is typically only enforced when under a load or dispatch. This insurance is intended to provide coverage for third-party injuries or property damage in the event the motor carrier was held liable.
Additionally, it is important that the owner-operator also obtain several other lines of coverage. These are typically mandated by the trucking company for the owner-operator to purchase prior to leasing on.
The owner-operator may also want to strongly consider (in some cases it will be required) purchasing physical damage or trailer interchange coverage. The physical damage insurance would be intended to cover damage or loss to the tractor. Trailer interchange coverage would be intended physical damage to a non-owned trailer that was being transported under a trailer interchange agreement.