Frequently Asked Questions About
Commercial General Liability Insurance
How much does commercial insurance cost?
Costs can vary widely based on industry and are also determined by zip code and often payroll and/or gross sales. Request a free quote to get an exact number.
What kind of business insurance do I need?
Most business owners need General Liability Insurance at the very least. If you have any non-owner employees, you will need workers compensation insurance too.
What is a Certificate of Insurance?
A Certificate of Insurance is proof of coverage. It lists the type and amount of liability coverage you have and other policy information when a third party requests it.
Is business insurance tax deductible?
Yes. you can deduct the cost of commercial insurance premiums. The IRS considers insurance a cost of doing business as long it benefits the business & serves a business purpose.
California Owner Operator Insurance
California Owner Operator Insurance. If you own or operate a truck, then you need insurance that mitigates your risks and protects you from liability. Owning and operating your own truck can be a wonderful way for an entrepreneur to make a good income. With owning a truck comes freedom of being one's own boss, making it a worthwhile occupation for many owner operators. However, the need for insurance is an essential operating expense.
Protecting your business to the fullest requires that you buy a sufficient amount of California owner operator insurance for your trucks.
California owner operator insurance helps your business cover costs from an accident if you or an employee is found liable - with rates as low as $167/mo. Get a fast quote and your proof of insurance now.
Owner operators can make a substantial living from their businesses. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the opportunities for owner/operators are poised to grow 9 percent by 2018. Most truckers bring home around $58K per year, although many make more. Most owner operators have invested a princely sum in their vehicles, and protecting them with the right level of insurance coverage is essential to the ongoing success of the small CA owner-operator or owner operators with multiple trucks.
While clearly this field is one that's rewarding, CA owner operators must protect their assets in the event that a theft or accident occurs. With the immense cost of buying a truck or fleet of trucks, it only makes sense to protect your investment with an adequate level of California owner operator insurance. If an accident or theft occurs, specialized insurance is a godsend.
Insurance Requirements for Tractor-Trailer, Semi-Truck and Other Commercial Vehicle Owners
If you are a commercial vehicle owner, federal law requires that you maintain a minimum of $750K in liability insurance coverage. Since an accident in a large truck like a tractor trailer can potentially cause a significant amount of damage, some experts recommend that truck owners buy $5 million in coverage. It is always better to have more than you need than to have less than you need if a bad accident occurs.
The driver of your truck, if you lease it out to someone else, is responsible for carrying liability coverage on the truck. Still, if the responsible party does not carry insurance in a sufficient amount to cover an incident, you may need to buy it yourself to ensure that you are not left holding the proverbial bag if an accident occurs. Consult with a licensed agent to determine if you should purchase additional California owner operator insurance to mitigate your risks.
Additional Truck Coverage Options
States vary widely in the amount of insurance required from owners of large trucks, tractor trailers and semis. Check your state to be sure you're fully insured and legal on the road. Based on your situation, you may need to purchase added coverage. Some other additional coverage options include:
- Physical damage policy. This type of coverage is likely required by your lender if you finance your truck, and when required, usually is required for the loan's term. You will have to pay premiums typically amounting to around 5 percent or so of the value of the truck, but your rate can be also based on your driving history. If your record is not so great, the cost of your policy will likely cause more. If your truck is involved in an accident, the insurance company will depreciate its value when determining a payout.
- Gap coverage. If you owe a lot on your vehicle, you should consider purchasing gap insurance. Like the name indicates, it bridges the gap between what you owe and what your vehicle is worth. In other words, if you total out the truck and still owe your lender for it, the difference in what the insurance company is willing to pay and what you owe is covered by gap insurance instead of coming out of your pocket.
- Equipment policies. Add this type of policy to your insurance to cover things like electronic equipment, tarps and other items that you add as after-market additions to your truck.
- Bobtail insurance. If you drive the truck without the trailer attached, this type of insurance covers any liabilities you face on the road if you were to collide with another vehicle or object.
- Cargo coverage. The U.S. government mandates the purchase of $5K or more in cargo coverage for the shipments you haul. Shippers and clients may require a higher level, depending on what you're actually hauling.
- Non-trucking liability coverage. If you are driving your truck outside the realm of conducting business, this coverage protects you from liability in the event of accident or injury.
- Occupational accident coverage. This protection supplements your employee's worker's comp benefits and provides other benefits such as accidental death and dismemberment coverage.
- Non-owned trailer. If you are using a trailer that does not belong to you, this type of coverage is essential to covering any damages that occur.
The Costs of Owner/Operator Insurance
In addition to basic coverage types for commercial drivers, you can also choose from an array of different California commercial auto insurance coverage types based on your particular needs. For instance, you may wish to opt for rental replacement insurance to cover the cost of renting a vehicle while yours is being repaired. You may choose roadside assistance and towing coverage to help offset the costs of vehicle breakdowns.
Will Your Policy Cover Personal Use of a Business Vehicle?
Although your particular needs, driving history, credit, and other factors go into determining the amount of your California owner operator insurance premium, comparing quotes makes a lot of sense. Your age, the condition of your truck, the equipment you've added to the truck, the cargo you normally haul, the route you take - these all go into determining the cost of your policy.
Although it's difficult to estimate, the following ranges are common:
- Primary liability insurance. This type of insurance starts at around $5K per year, but can be significantly more.
- Non-trucking liability coverage. This coverage starts at around $450 per year.
- Cargo insurance. Expect to pay around $1K annually.
- Physical damage insurance. Plan on paying around $2.5K.
Reduce your premiums by accepting higher deductibles or working with your agent to find discounts for which you qualify. Ask your agent to comparison shop for you to find a policy that is a blend of the protection you need and a budget you can afford.
California Economic Data, Regulations & Limits On Commercial Insurance
If you are an entrepreneur and you considering having your operations located in California, it's essential that you have a full understanding about the economy of the state, as well as the regulations and limits that are in place for commercial insurance.
If you are considering opening up a business in the Golden State, you first want to make sure that it is a sound location for your operations. That means that you should understand some key information related to the state's economy, as well as the types of insurance coverages that businesses are legally required to carry.
Economic Trends For Businesses In California
In terms of job creation, the state of California exceeds rate of job growth in the United States; however, as the state's metropolitan areas are reaching employment capacity, job growth is starting to slow. In 2017, the rate of growth was 2.1 percent, which is the slowest rate of growth since 2011; but it is still expected to increase by 1.8 percent by the end of 2018, and 1.2 percent by the end of 2019.
In the month of April, the unemployment rate in California dropped to 4.2 percent, which is a record low. This unemployment rate is expected to remain consistent for the rest of the calendar year; however, it's forecasted that the rate will start to increase in 2019.
The strongest labor market in the state is in the Bay Area, where the unemployment rate was 3.4 percent in 2017. Southern California follows, with an unemployment rate of 4.5 percent in 2017. In the Central Coast region, the rate was 5.4 percent and in the Central Valley, it was 6.6 percent. While the unemployment rate is considered high in these areas, they have decreased dramatically over the last 12 month period.
The industries that are expected to see the most growth in CA include:
- Information Technology
CA Commercial Insurance Regulations And Limits
The California Department of Insurance regulates insurance in the Golden State. In the state of CA, commercial liability insurance is not required; however, since the state does not cap rewards for liability law suits, business owners are wise to invest in this type of coverage. The amount of coverage recommended varies depending on the size of the business and in the industry.
Workers' compensation insurance is the only type of coverage that business owners are required to have. This applies to any organization that employs a salaried or hourly staff, even if that staff only consists of one employee. Furthermore, if an employee is injured or becomes ill as a result of work, business owners must pay for CA workers' comp benefits.
Additional Resources For Commercial Auto Insurance
Learn about small business commercial auto insurance which includes liability and physical damage protection for vehicles that are used for business purposes.
- Big Rig Truck
- Bobtail Non-Trucking Liability
- Commercial Auto
- Commercial Van
- Dump Truck
- Food Truck
- Non-Owned and Hired Auto Liability
- Owner Operator
- Pizza Delivery
- Tow Truck
The person injured in an vehicle accident may be a child, a wage earning single parent, a brain surgeon, or even a homeless person. The costs of the accident may be relatively small or run into the millions of dollars, depending on the victim and his or her injuries. Do you have the assets to handle such costs?
Trucking operations in this chapter are among the most heavily regulated in the country. All are subject to multiple types of regulation including municipal, state and federal. The regulations are necessary because potential for severe property damage and/or bodily injury is extremely high.
All carry cargo that if not handled appropriately could have serious consequences to the cargo owner and/or the public at large. Those that carry people must prove that they keep their equipment in good condition and that employees operate in a safe, sober manner.
The insurance company pays amounts an insured is legally obligated to pay as damages because of bodily injury or property damage and certain types of pollution events covered by this insurance caused by an accident and resulting from ownership, maintenance or use of covered vehicles.
The obligation to pay is triggered only by accidental occurrences involving vehicles covered under the Business Auto Coverage Form. An eligible pollution event is covered only if it is connected to a covered bodily injury or property damage loss.
It is important that you have the proper Limit of Insurance to protect your operations. This limit is the most the insurance company pays for the total of all damages, including any covered pollution cost or expense resulting from any one covered accident, is the Covered Auto liability limit of insurance on the declarations.
This limit applies regardless of the number of insureds, autos covered, vehicles involved in an accident, premium paid, or number of claims made.
Request a free California Owner Operator insurance quote in Alameda, Alhambra, Anaheim, Antioch, Apple Valley, Bakersfield, Baldwin Park, Bellflower, Berkeley, Buena Park, Burbank, Camarillo, Carlsbad, Carson, Chico, Chino Hills, Chino, Chula Vista, Citrus Heights, Clovis, Compton, Concord, Corona, Costa Mesa, Daly City, Davis, Downey, El Cajon, El Monte, Elk Grove, Escondido, Fairfield, Folsom, Fontana, Fremont, Fresno, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Glendale, Hawthorne, Hayward, Hemet, Hesperia, Huntington Beach, Indio, Inglewood, Irvine, Lake Forest, Lakewood, Lancaster, Livermore, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Lynwood, Manteca, Menifee, Merced, Milpitas, Mission Viejo, Modesto, Moreno Valley, Mountain View, Murrieta, Napa, Newport Beach, Norwalk, Oakland, Oceanside, Ontario, Orange, Oxnard, Palmdale, Palo Alto, Pasadena, Perris, Pleasanton, Pomona, Rancho Cordova, Rancho Cucamonga, Redding, Redlands, Redondo Beach, Redwood City, Rialto, Richmond, Riverside, Roseville, Sacramento, Salinas, San Bernardino, San Buenaventura, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, San Leandro, San Marcos, San Mateo, San Ramon, Santa Ana, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Clarita, Santa Maria, Santa Monica, Santa Rosa, Simi Valley, South Gate, Stockton, Sunnyvale, Temecula, Thousand Oaks, Torrance, Tracy, Turlock, Tustin, Union City, Upland, Vacaville, Vallejo, Victorville, Visalia, Vista, Walnut Creek, West Covina, Westminster, Whittier, Yorba Linda, Yuba City and all other cities in CA - The Golden State.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Information
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) - The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's primary mission is to prevent commercial motor vehicle-related fatalities and ideuries.
- Safer System - The FMCSA Safety and Fitness Electronic Records (SAFER) System offers company safety data and related services to industry and the public over the Internet. Users can search FMCSA databases, register for a USDOT number, pay fines online, order company safety profiles, challenge FMCSA data using the DataQs system, access the Hazardous Material Route registry, obtain National Crash and Out of Service rates for Hazmat Permit Registration, get printable registration forms and find information about other FMCSA Information Systems.
- FMCSA Forms - All forms needed for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
- Update MCS 150 - Form MCS-150 and Instructions - Motor Carrier Identification Report.
- How does CSA work? - CSA (Compliance - Safety - Accountability) re-engineers the former enforcement and compliance process to provide a better view into how well large commercial motor vehicle carriers and drivers are complying with safety rules, and to intervene earlier with those who are not.
Quotes from leading small business insurance carriers including: ACE, AmTrust, Chubb, Cincinnati, CNA, Colony, Employers, Evanston, Fireman's, Foremost, Guard, Hanover, Hiscox, Liberty Mutual, LLoyd's of London, Markel, MSA, Nationwide, Penn America, Philadelphia, Prime, Progressive, Scottsdale, The Hartford, Travelers, USLI, Utica First, Western World, Zurich & others.