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4 Things You Need to Start a Trucking Company
Mariah Barr
5 mins read

Wondering how to start a trucking company? Make sure you add these four items to your business checklist to start operating ASAP.

You've decided you're starting a trucking company. You may have already chosen the right business structure and name as well.

But you can’t stop there.

Getting started can be the most difficult part of running a trucking company, especially when you consider all the DOT registrations and permits you need to apply for.

Luckily, you don't need to go it alone. Below, we cover the top four DOT requirements you need to meet when starting a trucking company, including the following:

  • DOT Number
  • DOT Operating Authority
  • BOC-3 Filing
  • Unified Carrier Registration

DOT Number

Who needs a DOT number? 

If you’re operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV), you need a DOT number. A CMV is any type of motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight of 10,001 lbs or more, used for transporting goods or paid passengers.

How to get a DOT number

Foley will help you apply for a DOT number for free so you can start operating your trucking company as quickly and affordably as possible. This Foley blog article provides more information about the free DOT number filing process.

DOT Operating Authority

Who needs an operating authority?

If you’re operating a for-hire CMV in interstate commerce, you will need to obtain your operating authority from the federal government. For-hire means engaged in the transportation of goods or passengers for any kind of compensation. Interstate commerce is when you’re crossing state lines.

Operating authority may also be called a motor carrier (MC) number.

How to get an MC number

Foley’s Basic Operating Authority Package will guide you through the operating authority registration process. One of our trained DOT compliance specialists will:

  • Identify your Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) registration requirements 
  • Guide you through the process of how to get DOT number and MC number
  • Determine which forms you need to file to obtain your operating authority 
  • Complete and submit all required forms to FMCSA 
  • Help you understand what other important pieces of information are required by FMCSA

BOC-3 Filing

Who needs a BOC-3 filing?

If you’re operating a for-hire CMV in interstate commerce, you must have a current BOC-3 form on file with FMCSA to secure your operating authority and maintain an active operating status. To learn more about BOC-3 forms, click here.

How to file a BOC-3

Foley’s BOC-3, a Blanket Legal Entity for all 50 states, provides the legal name, addresses, and phone numbers of processing agents for your new trucking company. You can file your BOC-3 here.

Unified Carrier Registration (UCR)

Who needs to file a UCR?

The UCR is a registration number and fee for vehicles crossing state lines. The fee is based on the number of vehicles that you have.

The UCR is paid each year by calendar year, Jan-Dec. This means that if you purchase a UCR in November, you will need to purchase another one by January for the following year.

This helpful Foley article provides more information on UCR filing and UCR enforcement.

How to complete your UCR filing

Foley’s DOT compliance specialists can promptly process your 2024 UCR filing. All you need to do is provide us with some basic information about your business and/or your fleet and pay the fee set by the federal government.

Start a Trucking Company with Foley's DOT Compliance Programs

Now that you know how to start a trucking company, Foley is ready to guide you through all the steps of running a DOT-compliant business.

Foley’s DOT compliance specialists help thousands of owner-operators get started every year. Click here to start with your FREE DOT number or call us with any DOT compliance questions you may have.

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