Mailbag: ‘Don’t help the lawyers. Help us.’ –Readers on insurance

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More costs piled on by regulators in the form of an insurance hike, readers argue in the podcast below, would only serve to idle more trucks and boost crash settlements unnecessarily, with them attorney’s fees.More costs piled on by regulators in the form of an insurance hike, readers argue in the podcast below, would only serve to idle more trucks and boost crash settlements unnecessarily, with them attorney’s fees.

In the wake of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to potentially hike motor carrier liability insurance minimums, owner-operators continued to sound off on a common theme: Any added cost via further regulation would be unwelcome, to say the least. Insurance premium costs are high enough as it is, noted more than one small fleet owner-operator commenting in the mailbag podcast below.

As has been pointed out in a variety of reports, the current $750,000 motor carrier liability minimum covers all but the most catastrophic of accidents, with only around a single percent of all accidents exceeding the minimum in costs. In the podcast, one reader notes that boosting the liability minimum would have no safety impact and only serve to line the pockets of attorneys chasing truck accidents. As noted in the title of this story, another urged FMCSA and/or Congress not to “help the lawyers” by raising minimums, but to lend a hand to small-business truckers by taking no action on insurance.

Virtually alone among trucking associations/organizations supporting the notion of the insurance hike (OOIDA, ATA, NASTC and others have pushed back considerably against the idea that it is needed) is the “Trucking Alliance,” a group of sizable motor carriers.

 

Below, catch a few more voices with examples of niches in which current insurance costs run high, and more on the potential of a hike.

Track back through news of FMCSA’s efforts to research the liability insurance minimum level (currently $750,000) in the stories linked below, most recent first. The regulatory effort began around this time last year, following bills floated in the House of Representatives.  

**‘Help us stay in business’: Owner-ops tell FMCSA insurance increase would shut them down
**Audio mailbag: Minimum interstate age should be 18, insurance barriers to new owner-operators
**Trucking wins in restart fight, losing on insurance increase
**FMCSA publishes official notice of insurance increase consideration, looking for industry input
**Pay the drivers, already: Voices on the future of the industry
**Liability insurance increase for carriers could see delay, may never come, ATA says
**Audio mailbag: Liability insurance, sleeper berth flexibility
**Division on liability insurance hike in the spotlight at regulatory meeting
**+25 percent: What double the liability insurance coverage will likely cost
**House clears bill amendment to stop FMCSA from raising carrier insurance minimums
**DOT adds raising carrier insurance minimums to regulatory calendar

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