Don't be dishonest with insurers to lower premiums

The consequences of dishonesty when it comes to the information provided for an insurance policy can be devastating. 

Consider the documented case of a driver who was reentering the industry and starting his own trucking company. After completing the insurance application with an agent, that agent submitted it to several insurance companies only to find that all of the companies he typically worked with declined to even offer a quote. 

The agent reviewed all the information. None of the company owner’s drivers had any tickets or violations, there was only one insurance claim from the gentleman’s past (not uncommon for most drivers), and the trucks and trailers were all on the newer side. 

He then contacted one of the insurance carriers, who noted the owner’s previous federal operating authority had been revoked because his insurance had been canceled by the insurance company. 

If you are ever tempted to -- or if anyone (a business partner, friend or even an insurance agent) suggests you should -- mislead your insurance company, don’t do it. Here are some of the most common deceptions: 

  1. Not including all vehicles owned or operated on the policy (this includes trucks and trailers). 
  2. Not including all drivers on the policy. 
  3. Utilizing someone else’s address as a garaging address. 
  4. Utilizing a P.O. Box address as the physical location of the business. 

While these deceptions might reduce your premium, they are also valid reasons for an insurance company to cancel your insurance policy. Once that happens, it follows you like a bad smell after hitting a skunk. No matter how hard you try you just can’t get rid of it and nobody wants to park next to you in the truck stop. That’s basically how insurance companies deal with dishonest owners.

Find more information about going independent, among a myriad of other topics, in the Overdrive/ATBS-coproduced "Partners in Business" manual for new and established owner-operators, a comprehensive guide to running a small trucking business. Click here to download the updated 2022 edition of the Partners in Business manual free of charge. 

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