Act Fast To Help Raise Trucking Insurance Minimums

February 24, 2015   |   Jean Sutton Martin

Do you ride on our nation’s highway where there are tractor trailers, commercial buses and commercial trucks? Do you have a truck driver in your family who is daily traveling these roads?  Did you know that those who are injured in a trucking or bus accident, including drivers of these vehicles, almost never get a full recovery?

The minimum insurance requirements for interstate motor carriers have remained unchanged for over three decades. Congress set the minimum level of liability insurance coverage for tractor trailers in 1984 at $750,000.  In 29 years, the minimum policy limits have never been increased. Yes, this minimum policy requirement has not been increased since the Reagan Administration. Medical bills and the costs associated with catastrophic injuries have risen dramatically. Today, in a catastrophic case, the minimum limits are paid and quickly spent.  If adjusted for medical inflation (to keep up with rising medical costs), the minimum policy limits should be over $4 million!  With many companies maintaining only the required minimum, seriously injured victims often receive recovery that does not cover their medical bills, much less lost wages and other non-economic damages.

The minimum insurance requirements for interstate motor carriers have remained unchanged for over three decades.  Clearly it is time that the minimum limits be raised!  This is important for you and your family.  What can you do?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has a pending rulemaking to adjust the interstate truck and bus minimum insurance requirements now for inflation, and then update it every four years thereafter.  Send a comment to the FMCSA by clicking  Tell the FMCSA that you want to feel safe when driving on our highways.   Tell the FMCSA it is time to make a change and that the increase to the trucking insurance policy minimums is long overdue.  When liability policy minimums are inadequate, ultimately the burden of payment for injuries shifts away from the party at fault and to victims, their families, Medicare – and ultimately to taxpayers.

The deadline is February 26th – so act NOW!

Written by Jean Sutton Martin of the Law Office of Jean Sutton Martin PLLC.