top of page

How To Start A Trucking Company Guide

How To Start A Trucking Company ?

From the beginning to the load process. We can help you on How to Start A Trucking Company

Trucking is a heavily regulated industry. Before your company can begin operating, there are numerous government requirements you will need to meet and also keep current.

If your looking to start a trucking company today then LFS has a program that will enable you to do this quickly and strategically. We work with new trucking company start-ups and it is our passion to help people realize the dream of owning their own trucking company. From beginning to moving your first freight load, LFS has the experience and know how to developing a solid trucking company for long term growth.

LFS Logistical Development Program helps qualified entrepreneurs reach their goal of how to start a trucking company and implementing a DOT qualified trucking company in America. The program walks you thru each step of building your own trucking company focused on moving freight within 30 days of initial start up.

LFS also makes sure your new trucking company starts off compliant and we offer to handle and help assist with your first  trucking authority and also your new trucking entrant audit with the FMCSA . We teach you and show you the correct way of how to start a trucking company.

Below is a list of more Services to help you build a trucking company

Any person wanting to learn how to start a trucking company can find information here as a guide on building a solid trucking company for today's logistics market. Logistical forwarding Solutions has been helping people on how to start a trucking company's for over almost 20 years. Not only does Logistical Forwarding Solutions help with how to start a trucking company, we also help with the trucking company getting their first freight loads and the compliance that comes with owning a trucking company. Our Logistical Development training program enables the individual to learn how to start a trucking company and the process of the load movement. This ensures the new trucking company owner is completely knowledgeable within all areas of obtaining freight and moving freight consistently.

LFS offers a combined experience of 20 years to its members and this allows you to completely understand the ins and outs of how to start a trucking company the right way. We show you how to bypass any potential areas that might cause mistakes and within 30 days you can be moving your first load under your licensed new trucking company. 

Here is a Complete Guide On How To Start A Trucking Company

1. Obtain A Trucking Business License

When learning how to start a trucking company, your first step is to form a legal trucking business within your State. You will want to focus on a name that represents what your company is about and also file the necessary paperwork with your State. We recommend using to help assist you with your business filing and this can be done within a few days. You will also want to apply for an EIN (Employer Identification Number). You can not move forward without an EIN and the EIN information must be exact as your business information.

When we teach you how to start a trucking company, we talk with you about your business entity set up. We recommend an INC or LLC. Your options are :

  • Sole proprietorship

  • Partnership

  • Limited liability corporation (LLC) 

  • Corporation (C-corp, S-corp, etc.)

2. Learning How to start a trucking company will enable you to understand why you must apply For EIN Employer Identification Number

Cost is Free

You can apply for your federal EIN number online with the IRS. Make sure that the information you provide is exactly the same as the information on your business license.

3. Apply for your US DOT and MC Operating Authority

Cost is $300.00

To begin the process of obtaining your MC Authority online, You must register your trucking company business through the URS (Unified Registration System). The website portal can be found here . Once you begin the registration process, you will be asked to open an account with the URS. FMCSA would like for you to create an account for accessing the application. The account will allow you to return to complete your application if you are not able to complete it in a single sitting. The FMCSA will assign an Applicant ID to you.

You will be asked to specify a password and security questions This application process will lead to you obtaining an MC# and US DOT#. You will be given a PIN # emailed to your business address that allows you to log into your Accounts provided by the FMCSA. You must keep this PIN safe and secure as the only way to get another PIN is through mail.

Your USDOT Number is a number from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) is used to collect and monitor your company's safety information, inspections, crash investigations, etc. Your MC Operating Authority is a All for-hire and carriers must have authority from the DOT to haul freight across state lines. Your authority also determines what types of freight you can haul.

4. Apply for your UCR Filing

Cost Average $100.00 per truck

The UCR ACT, established in 2005 requires motor carriers, freight brokers, and freight forwarders that are involved for profit in interstate commerce. The annual fee is based upon the fleet size of trucking company's and freight brokers and freight forwarders are subject to the minimum fee. The UCR is used for funding and maintaining the State roads and highways and safety programs.

UCR fees are based on the total number of vehicles operated by a carrier. Trailers are not counted as vehicles. The number of commercial motor vehicles for purposes of determining carrier UCR fees is the number of self-propelled commercial motor vehicles the carrier reported in the most recent Form MCS-150 filed with the FMCSA. You can learn more about the UCR filing by visiting LFS Guide to UCR filing. 

There are 5 categories that determine if you must file for a UCR. If your trucking company fits in either one of these categories, then filing for a UCR is mandatory.

  1. Operations requiring a USDOT number for interstate transportation

  2. Operations requiring a MC or MX number from the FMCSA

  3. Interstate brokers

  4. Interstate leasing companies

  5. Interstate freight forwarders

5. Apply For Trucking Liability Insurance

Cost Between $2500 to $4500

Liability Insurance for your trucking company is important and you can not open a trucking company with out liability insurance. The FMCSA will give you about 21 days from the filing date of your MC Authority and DOT to apply Liability Insurance with your FMCSA Authority Application. The minimum limit of insurance for liability is $750,000 and most new trucking companies will opt for a policy of $1,000,000. The FMCSA does not require this amount for liability insurance but most shippers will. It is better to have the amount of liability insurance the shippers request so your freight options are better.

Here is the list of the different insurance policy's your trucking company should focus on when starting out:

  • Primary Liability: At least $750,000 ( We choose $1 million) in primary liability coverage.

  • Cargo: $100,000 

  • Physical Damage: 

  • Non-Trucking Use (Bobtail)

Read More on The Different Types Of Commercial Trucking Insurance

6. Obtain A Process Agent and File A Form BOC-3

Cost $100.00

A process agent is a person or company representative of your freight broker or trucking company that upon whom legal papers may be served on your behalf. This is usually required by US State law and is also known by registered agent,   a resident agent, or statutory agent. The FMCSA requires all trucking companies, freight broker companies, and freight forwarders to have a process agent within each 50 states. The filing is done by a form called a BOC-3. You can learn more by visiting LFS Guide To A Process Agent BOC-3

7. Register for An IFTA Account

IN order to register for your IFTA account and IRP Portion Plates, you will have to wait until your trucking authority has become active. The FMCSA will send your Trucking Authority Certificate to your registered business address within 21 days of your filing. You would have to had already in place a trucking liability insurance policy as well.

International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) – IFTA is an agreement among the lower 48 U.S. states and Canadian provinces to simplify reporting of fuel use by carriers who drive in multiple states. Carriers file a quarterly fuel tax report that determines their tax and distributes it to the states. Your truck must have an IFTA decal on it, and you have to apply for a new one at the beginning of every year.

Read more in depth about registering for an IFTA account here. Knowledge is key to starting your trucking company.    IFTA Fuel Tax Information

We teach in our program how to start a trucking company that the Trucking Company's must be capable of additional filings per For IFTA in other States as required :

  • New Mexico

All motor carriers operating vehicles in New Mexico with a gross vehicle weight over 26,000 pounds need a New Mexico weight distance tax account. When the account is opened quarterly reports must be filed. This is in addition to an IFTA license

  • Kentucky

All motor carriers operating in Kentucky with a combined weight of 60,000 pounds or more are subject to weight distance tax. Such carriers are required to open a KYU account. Once the account is opened quarterly reports must be filed.

The motor carrier is no longer required to display the KYU number on their truck. Vehicles are verified through your USDOT number. However, you are required to update your inventory list of trucks with Kentucky as it changes. This is in addition to an IFTA license.

  • New York

New York Highway Use Tax (HUT) is a weight distance tax imposed on all carriers operating in motor vehicles in excess of 18,000 pounds on New York highways. You are required to open a HUT account and register each vehicle that travels in New York. This is in addition to an IFTA license.

  • Oregon

Oregon Highway Use Tax is a mileage tax which is assessed against all carriers with a gross vehicle weight over 26,000 pounds. You need an Oregon Weight Receipt and Tax Identifier receipt if you plan to travel through Oregon. Once you have the account you will have to file monthly reports. Oregon will also require a bond be filed to open the account. Oregon does not charge a fuel tax fee in addition to their mile tax.

8. File for International Registration Plan (IRP) -  

Cost depends on State (Average $1800)

IRP distributes registration fees based on distance traveled in each U.S. state or Canadian province. You have to register on your state's transportation website. or in person at your local office. You can contact your DMV ( Department Of Motor Vehicle) and they can assist you to the nearest IRP registration location. IRP, also called Apportioned Registration, is a method of registering fleets of vehicles that travel in two or more member jurisdictions. All states (except Alaska and Hawaii) and 10 Canadian provinces are members of the plan. Motor carriers that qualify for IRP must register fleets of vehicles in their home or “base” jurisdiction. A fleet, for IRP purposes, is comprised of one or more trucks

9. Apply for a SCAC Code. Standard Carrier Alpha Codes (SCAC).

Cost  is $78.00 

A SCAC Code is required when doing business with all U.S. Government agencies and with many commercial shippers including, but not limited to, those in the automobile, petroleum, forest products, and chemical industries as well as suppliers to retail businesses and carriers engaged in railroad piggyback trailer and ocean container drayage. Carriers who use the Uniform Intermodal Interchange Agreement (UIIA) are required to maintain a valid SCAC. The petroleum industry uses SCACs in their integrated software programs that expedite the movement of bills of lading, pipeline tickets, product transfer orders, and inventory data. Many commercial shippers and receivers utilize SCACs in their freight bill audit and payment systems. A Standard Carrier Alpha Code (SCAC) is a unique two-to-four-letter code used to identify transportation companies. NMFTA developed the SCAC identification codes in the mid 1960's to facilitate computerization in the transportation industry. You can file for the SCAC code by visiting

​10. Understanding Ongoing Compliance With The FMCSA

Once you have applied to begin your new trucking company and the FMCSA has granted you active, you will immediately want to begin your new trucking company within compliance to the guidelines of the FMCSA. We teach you when you are learning how to start a trucking company that Your trucking company will also be entered into the new trucking entrant program and you will be audited within the first 10 to 18 months after starting your trucking company. The audit will ensure and make sure that you have been operating under the guidelines of the FMCSA.


We like to describe to new trucking company owners from the idea of just think of your trucking company as a 747 Boeing Airplane with no wigs traveling down the interstate. The FMCSA will treat and demand compliance from this standard. Accidents and not following the rules  carry stiff penalty's and fines. Operating your trucking company correctly from day 1 under these guidelines is also mandatory and it is Highly recommended to partner with a consulting company the same as Logistical Forwarding Solutions. We can guide you from the beginning on how to start a trucking company, help you implement compliance, and help you secure your first load. This is all done within our Logistical Development Program and is considered to be very affordable. learning how to start a trucking company the right way can be enjoyable and fun!

LFS can help you with each of these filings on your behalf. Most people who just are new in learning how to start a trucking company can be a bit overwhelmed with the filing process and dealing with different State and Federal regularities. Logistical Forwarding Solutions has over 20 years assisting new trucking companies with this process and we have the knowledge to make this stress free and quickly done. Feel free to contact us today and to discuss the options of filing your new trucking authority on your behalf. 

Learning how to start a trucking company can be rewarding and financially profitable. Contact us today to learn more.

Learn About Trucking Business Investment

How To Start A Trucking Company

bottom of page