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    Donated Vehicle and Requirements for Use

    Posted by MAIA on Jul 17, 2019 12:01:00 AM


    This question was answered based upon current rules, regulations & statutes in effect on May 10, 2019

    Good Morning Irene, I have a unique situation, one of our nonprofits received a 2009 Ford F450 as a gift. The vehicle is presently being retrofitted at the vocational school (we have an inland marine policy covering the vehicle now). They will be putting workstations in the van and using it for teaching computer skills. As such they will drive to various places, parking the vehicle for the day and teaching approximately 10 students a day.

    I know we will need to register and provide Auto insurance as it is driven on public roadways. My questions is coverage for the Liability, as the General Liability has an exclusion under that policy for auto and whether or not the driver will need a special license to operate (vehicle gross weight is 12,000).

     Thank you in advance


    Irene Morrill:  I have no idea about license.  Interesting that the BAP gets the entire exposure – the operations exclusion in the BAP doesn’t apply

    Sending this to Kathy Cormier, CPPL, Member Relations Advocate and MAIA RMV expert. She might know about licensing when she returns next week

    Judy Carlson: The attached chart should be used as a reference only as regulations change all the time...but this will give the client an idea of what they are looking at for compliance issues and their business.  It’s important to note that this is NOT an insurance issue, it is all the cost of doing their business and they are subject to compliance certain requirements. 

    To get a USDOT number your client needs to go to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration:  https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/.  There is no fee for a USDOT number.

    Here are three carriers that we know of that work with a business to see if they are in compliance, and unless your agency is an EXPERT in business compliance for the TYPE of business your customer has, it is not recommended that you advise as fines are HUGE.  For the cost of belonging to one of these organizations will be a lot cheaper than any fine they could receive:

    1. Fleet Safety Services:  http://www.fleet-safety.com/
    2. Transportation Advisors:  http://transportationadvisor.com/
    3. JJ Keller:  https://www.jjkeller.com/home

    There are other compliance specialists out there and we are being told that once you sign up for a USDOT# they are reaching out directly to the business.  The ones listed above are the ones that we know of but there are more out there and that would be a decision the client would need to make on who they would like to hire.

    The markings regulation is in two parts.

    The first part on markings talks of the owner of every motor truck used for the transportation of goods, wares or merchandise for hire, gain or reward, shall have the owner’s name marked on the truck, to be plainly visible from each side, be in permanent letters that contrast sharply in color with the background on which the letters are placed.  They define these vehicles of having a maximum load carrying capacity of between 2,000 – 10,000 lbs.  These vehicles must have the owners name on the truck.

    The second part of the markings regulation is talking about US DOT number now being required for all that work Intrastate (Massachusetts only) that have a gross vehicle weight or a gross combination weight of 10,001 lbs. or more; or ANY vehicle regardless of weight that transports hazardous materials that require placards; or any vehicle designed to transport 15 or more passengers including the driver MUST now have USDOT numbers.

    2.22: Markings on Commercial Vehicles

    (1) Marking.

     (b) Effective September 1, 2018. The owner of every motor truck used for the transportation of goods, wares or merchandise for hire, gain or reward, shall have the owner’s name marked on the truck, to be plainly visible from each side, be in permanent letters that contrast sharply in color with the background on which the letters are placed; be readily legible during daylight hours from a distance of 50 feet while the motor truck is stationary; and be kept and maintained in a manner that retains the legibility required by 540 CMR 2.22(1)(b), provided that motor trucks owned or controlled by a farmer and used to transport agricultural products, farm machinery, and/or farm supplies to or from the farmer’s farm; not used in the operation of a common or contract carrier, and used within 150 air miles of the farmer’s farm need not be so marked; and motor trucks operated under a lease of more than 30 days shall display either the name of the owner or the lessee, and may display both. For the purpose of 540 CMR 2.22(1), Motor Truck shall mean any motor vehicle specially designed or equipped to transport personal property over the ways of the Commonwealth and which has a maximum load carrying capacity of between 2,000 lbs. and 10,000 lbs. and which is not a Private Passenger Motor Vehicle under 540 CMR 2.05. To the extent there is any conflict between 540 CMR 2.22 and any federal regulation pertaining to markings on commercial motor vehicles, the federal regulation shall control.

    (2) U.S. DOT Number Assignment for Intrastate Carriers. Effective September 1, 2018, every motor vehicle engaged in intrastate commerce in Massachusetts having a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 or more lbs.; and every motor vehicle regardless of weight, engaged in intrastate commerce in Massachusetts and used in the transportation of hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placarding; and every motor vehicle designed to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver, used in intrastate commerce in Massachusetts must be permanently marked with a USDOT number assigned in a manner conforming to the provisions of 49 CFR 390.21.

    (3) Penalty. The penalty for a violation of 540 CMR 2.22 is set forth in M.G.L. c. 90, § 20.

    Hope this helps!

     This document is not a legal opinion and should not be relied upon as such. The intent of this document is to provide a general background regarding the topic or topics discussed, not to provide legal advice. Producers and agencies should consult an attorney regarding specific situations and specific questions with respect to the topic or topics covered in this document. Neither the Massachusetts Association of Insurance Agents, Number One Insurance Agency nor any of its employees shall be responsible for any errors or omissions regarding any statements made in this document, nor any errors or omissions regarding any statutes, regulations, court rules, and/or any other government documents cited in this document.

    Topics: Commercial, 2019

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