Non-Trucking Liability Insurance, otherwise known as NTL Insurance, is a liability coverage plan for when you use your truck for personal use. NTL Insurance covers any property damage or bodily injury to a third party. Are you about to purchase non trucking liability insurance for owner operator in 2021? If YES, then here is everything you need to know about it.

Working as an owner-operator and driving your own truck entails that you must have the right protection whenever you hit the road. A good number of times when you are under dispatch, you are covered by the insurance your motor carrier offers, but if you are not working and you are using your truck as transportation, know that this insurance does not cover you.

However, you must know this type of insurance does not cover everything. If you are taking your truck to the garage for servicing, you are not covered by this type of insurance. You also have to understand that this type of coverage doesn’t cover you when you have a trailer on your truck. Even if the trailer is empty and you get in a collision, this coverage still does not protect you.

Every company’s situation will be different depending on how employees are hired and managed. As a general rule-of-thumb, the owner/operator of the truck is the one responsible for purchasing NTL insurance. So while your carrier may acquire insurance for the vehicle while it is in operational use, the owner/operator is responsible for all that occurs during personal use of the vehicle. Since NTL Insurance covers this window of time, it is the owner/operator’s responsibility.

Whether or not you will be mandated to have NTL Insurance is dependent upon your carrier. They may have alternative plans set up which would require different types of insurance. Talk with them about exactly what’s required and the pricing of such insurance from their current provider.

While each policy may vary slightly, the general total coverage with NTL Insurance will be $1,000,000 CSL. However, ensure to talk with your carrier about whether or not this is required. It is common that bobtail insurance may be sufficient in place of NTL, but this will depend on your carrier’s plan.

Benefits of Having Non Trucking Liability Insurance

NTL is in most cases, required by the motor carrier with whom the owner/operator has signed a lease agreement. This insurance is known to fill a potential gap for non-business use and helps to protect the motor carrier’s primary liability policy. Basic benefits of this insurance include;

  • It fights legal battles for you: Note that if you ever get sued, rightly or frivolously, liability insurance will foot the bill for your legal representation and any damages you owe. It makes the daunting legal process much easier to handle.
  • It covers damage so you don’t have to: Although this insurance won’t pay to cover damage to your own vehicle, it will pay for damage you caused to others. Note that it is way easier to budget for insurance premiums than it is for a sudden $100,000 cost—which helps your business stay solvent and profitable.
  • It guarantees that you’ll be able to pay if you hurt someone or damage their property: If you’re at fault for an accident, paying to make the other parties whole isn’t just the law; it’s the right thing to do. Liability insurance helps you make things right as fast as possible.

Steps to Purchase Non Trucking Liability Insurance as an Owner Operator

Here are simple steps to take when looking to purchase non trucking insurance as an owner operator;

  1. Contact an independent insurance agent: The agent you choose should have an established track record working with a few different insurance companies (called carriers), so they can shop around and find you the right deal. You should feel free to ask your agent lots of questions to get a feel for their expertise.
  2. Decide what kinds of coverage you want: If you’re in the market for other kinds of business insurance, like physical damage insurance, now is a good time to buy. Bundling multiple types of insurance together can net you a discount.
  3. Fill out applications: Note that your agent will fill out applications for you or help you fill them out yourself. Then, insurance companies will decide what prices and coverage to offer you. These offers are called quotes.
  4. Compare quotes: At this point, you have a few different offers to consider. Remember not to just go for the cheapest option right away. Talk with your agent about which quote is the right choice for your business. Ideally, you want an option that balances cost and effectiveness. Also, ask about which discounts have been applied and whether you might qualify for more.


Non-trucking liability coverage is likely to cost a few thousand dollars per year. However, you should budget for it as part of your business insurance coverage. Note that having business insurance helps your trucking business run smoothly and stay profitable.

Non-trucking liability insurance can be bundled in with other policies like physical damage insurance as part of your commercial auto policy. You can work with an independent insurance agent to mix and match policies to create the business insurance that’s ideal for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What Is Non Trucking Liability Insurance?

Non-trucking liability insurance is a liability that covers when you use your business truck for personal use like going to the bank, grocery store, or your kid’s special events. Since you are not driving for business purposes, there is no coverage under your trucker’s liability or business auto policy.

  1. What Insurance Do Truckers Need?

Primary liability truck insurance is often required as part of a trucking license — it protects people and property from damage caused by your truck. Please note that if you are a driver and you want to drive on your own authority, then you will need primary liability insurance.

  1. What Is Bobtail Insurance Coverage?

Bobtail insurance covers you and your semi truck when you are not hauling a trailer or other load. For example, if you drop off a load in Sacramento and bobtail to Reno to pick up your next load for a different company, bobtail insurance will cover you for that portion of the trip.

  1. What Are The Basics Of Commercial Trucking Insurance?

Here are some of the primary types of commercial truck insurance;

  • Truckers’ Liability Coverage. (Truckers’ Primary Auto Liability Coverage)
  • Physical Damage Coverage
  • Motor Truck Cargo Coverage
  • Trailer Interchange
  • Uninsured and Underinsured Driver
  • A Good Deal
  • Prompt Claims Processing
  • Specialization
  1. What Is The Difference Between Bobtail And Non-Trucking?

Unlike bobtail insurance that only covers you if you do not have a load attached, non-trucking liability protects owner-operators from liability claims when the truck is not being used for business purposes, whether or not there is a trailer in tow.

  1. What Is Hot Shot Trucking Insurance?

Hot Shot Truck Insurance is a commercial auto policy specializing in the expedited transport of cargo with a pickup truck. This insurance protects your business from third-party liability claims involving bodily injury, physical damage you cause, as well as physical damage to your vehicle, and injury to your person.

  1. How Much Does Bobtail Insurance Cost?

The cost of bobtail insurance depends on several factors. During the underwriting process, insurance companies review driving history, limits requested, and frequency of truck use without a trailer. It typically Bobtail insurance cost is about $30 per month or $360 a year on average for up to a $1 million dollar coverage limit. Of course, as always, bobtail truck insurance costs may vary from one business to another, so this has to be kept in mind.

  1. What Is A Cancellation Policy?

A cancellation policy is the amount of money the traveler will not be refunded if they cancel a booking within a given time frame. For example, 25 percent will be refunded to the customer if he cancels less than 24 hours before the departure of a tour. The purpose of a company cancellation policy is to limit when, how, and why a client can cancel an appointment or service without penalty.

  1. What Are Some Tips For Reducing Your Insurance Premiums?

Here are some of the things you can do to lower your insurance costs;

  • Shop around for the best deal
  • Before you buy a car or a truck, compare insurance costs
  • Ask for higher deductibles
  • Reduce coverage on older cars
  • Buy your homeowners and auto coverage from the same insurer
  • Maintain a good credit record
  • Take advantage of low mileage discounts
  • Get complete protection
  • Insure more than one vehicle
  • Ask about group insurance
  • Seek out other discounts.
  1. How Can I Save On My Commercial Truck Insurance?

Here are 6 Ways you can Reduce Your Commercial Trucking Insurance Premiums are;

  • Employ Experienced Drivers
  • Hire Drivers with Clean Driving Records
  • Verify Driver Employment History
  • Map out Your Trucking Routes
  • Use Newer Trucks
  • Consider a Higher Deductible.
Joy Nwokoro