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How to File Your BOC-3 Form: A Step-by-Step Guide
Mariah Barr
8 mins read

Starting a new trucking company and doing all the administrative tasks that come with it can be stressful, overwhelming, and difficult to figure out on your own.

In this helpful guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about BOC-3 filing and how to do it so you can get your vehicle(s) out on the road.

What is a BOC-3 Form?

A BOC-3 form is a form you must fill in with the names and addresses of those authorized to receive legal documents on behalf of your business in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. While filling in a physical BOC-3 form is possible, most filing is now done online.

Who is required to file a BOC-3 Form?

Any new transportation company must file a BOC-3 before they can start operating within the United States, whether they plan to operate as a motor carrier, broker, or freight forwarder.

Can I file my own BOC-3 Form?

As with most DOT compliance requirements, it depends. If you are a motor carrier, only a BOC-3 designation of process agent can file for you, and it must be filed online.

But if you are a freight forwarder or broker that does not own and operate CMVs (commercial vehicles) you can file your BOC-3 yourself with a physical paper copy.

What is a BOC 3 Process Agent?

A BOC-3 process agent, also known as an FMCSA agent, is an individual or business appointed by you to receive legal documents on your behalf. This means that should you receive a summons, complaint, or another form of legal communication; they will receive that information first.

You need to have a BOC-3 designation of process agent in each state you operate in. That means that if you operate in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Arkansas, you’ll need a BOC-3 agent in each state (so 4 BOC-3 agents in total).

Your BOC-3 process agents must also be available at that address during normal business hours (This is essentially the same as needing to have a registered agent in each state you operate in when you have an LLC).

Note that some organizations can cover you in multiple states, so your BOC-3 process agent may represent you in all the states you operate in. This is often the easiest way to file your BOC-3.

Do I Really Need FMCSA BOC 3 Process Agents?

In many cases, you are legally required to elect process agents to act on your behalf, so yes, you do. Even if you aren’t, working with FMCSA BOC-3 process agents is a good idea.

While their services range depending on who you work with, many provide a range of services that make your life easier and less stressful, such as legal counsel, communication with the FMCSA, and assistance in staying on top of your business’s administrative tasks, helping you avoid fines. They also file hundreds of BOC-3 forms, so they know exactly what is necessary.

How much does it cost to file a BOC-3 Form?

BOC-3 filing cost varies from agent to agent, depending on what level of service you want them to provide you with. You may work with them only for your BOC-3 filing, or you may choose to purchase additional services from them to help make your life as a new business owner that much easier. With the complexity of FMCSA regulations, it’s a good idea to have the help of an expert – especially as you get your business started.

How long does it take to file a BOC-3 form?

Once you’ve selected your BOC-3 process agents and paid their fees, they’ll often file for you within a few business days. Once the FMCSA has received the document, they’ll mail your operating authority documents to you within 3-4 business days.

What documents are required for filing a BOC-3 Form?

If you’re a motor carrier, then your BOC-3 process agent(s) will need to fill out your form(s) for you. Whether you’re able to file it yourself or not, you’ll need the following information:

  • Name and address of the trucking company 
  • The name and title of the person authorized to sign on behalf of the company 
  • The name and address of the FMCSA BOC-3 process agent(s) for each state

How to File Your BOC-3 Form

To file your BOC-3, you need to choose your BOC-3 processing agents. In most cases, it’s going to be easiest for you to do this with a “Blanket Legal Entity,” which is essentially a company that can represent you in all 50 states, leaving you free to operate your business as you wish. This is also the most cost-effective way to move forward, as you don’t have to waste time finding different BOC-3 agents and paying their various fees.

Do BOC-3 Forms Expire?

While BOC-3 forms do not expire, you must update yours when certain factors about your business change.

When to update your BOC-3 forms

You should refile your BOC-3 any time there is a name change, transfer of authority, or another change to the details you provided on your BOC-3.

What are the benefits of using a processing agent?

We provide a fast and easy filing process here at Foley, so if you want to simply enter your details and sit back and relax, we’re here to help. We’re happy to handle the entire process for you so you can focus on getting your new company up and running.

To work with us, simply click here, provide us with the carrier’s legal name, MC number, and DOT number (as applicable), add your BOC-3 filing order to your cart, and check out.

In no more than 72 hours, we’ll file your BOC-3 agent processing form and you’ll soon receive your documentation. 

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