Importance of Having Driver Guidelines
February 25, 2016
Author: Jackie Evans, Account Administrator
“Does this driver meet our insurance carrier’s guidelines?” This common question has been brought up at one time or another by most motor carriers. When motor carriers ask this question, they should also be asking, “Does this driver meet our guidelines?” It is becoming increasingly important for each motor carrier to have set guidelines that they follow prior to requesting approval from their insurance carriers.
Some insurance carriers do not have an established set of guidelines for who is and isn’t insurable, and will often defer to the motor carrier’s guidelines. These carriers may request a copy of the motor carrier’s guidelines, usually during the quoting process. This is a way for the insurance carrier to monitor and know that the motor carrier is responsibly managing their hiring process. Motor carrier guidelines help paint a picture for the insurance carrier as to the type of driver the motor carrier is seeking to hire. It also allows the insurance carrier to see how strictly the motor carrier adheres to their policy. Almost all insurance carriers require a copy of a drivers’ motor vehicle record for quoting purposes and additions midterm to a policy and they can quickly see which drivers fall outside of the established guidelines. This will prompt the carrier to ask about corrective actions and information on how the motor carrier continues to manage the process. Drivers can adversely impact insurance pricing if motor vehicle records fall outside of driver guidelines established by the insurance carrier.
In addition to insurance carriers referencing a motor carrier’s guidelines, another reason to have an established set of qualifications is to make sure the motor carrier is adhering to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration qualifications. Part 383 of the FMCSA’s regulations address commercial driver’s license standards which includes requirements and penalties. This regulation specifically states, among other things, that “an employer must not knowingly allow, require, permit, or authorize a driver who is disqualified to drive a commercial motor vehicle.” In part 383.51 of the regulation, the FMCSA lays out specifically what disqualifies a driver and for what period of time the driver is disqualified. These disqualifications can be found at the following website: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/title49/section/383.51 Should a driver fall outside of the FMCSA’s qualifications, and the motor carrier knowingly allowed them to drive, they could be subject to penalties or fines ranging anywhere from $2,750 to $25,000.
There are many reasons for the motor carrier to have their own established set of guidelines for drivers. Two reasons being for the insurance carrier to reference if needed as well as adherence to federal regulations. It is a best practice followed by many motor carriers currently as it allows the motor carrier to effectively manage their hiring process.
|Jackie Evans, Account Administrator
I was born and raised in Dubuque, IA and have lived either here or Bellevue, IA my whole life. I attended the University of Dubuque where I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and Accounting. I was hired at Cottingham & Butler in January of 2007 as a Client Service Representative in the NSTD division. I was promoted to a Client Service Representative Supervisor in January of 2011 and to an Account Administrator in May of 2011. I am currently working on my AAI & CIC designations. I enjoy spending time with my son and husband and can’t wait for the weather to warm up so we can get more time outside. We also can’t wait to welcome our newest addition in June as well!