MCS90 Filing
by Chris Grigas

MCS90 Filing

One of the many facts of driving on the highway is you will most likely share the road with a semi-truck at some time in your travels. Trucking is an integral part of our country’s economy, transporting over 14,457 million tons of cargo in 2013 according to!

In order to operate as a trucking company, there are many requirements you must be in compliance with. One particular filing that is often confusing and misunderstood is the MCS-90 form.

The MCS-90 form, according to, is an automobile endorsement that is added to an existing automobile policy which guarantees that you have and will continue to maintain an automobile liability policy within the limits required by the scope of the trucking company’s operations. Basically, an MCS-90 says that if a trucking company is at fault for an incident, the insurance company will cover the costs of the incident, up to the limit stated on the form, even if it is excluded under the normal auto policy. An example of this would be pollution – if the insured is at fault for an incident involving pollution damage, the carrier would still have to pay as the insured has coverage under the MCS-90. However, the caveat to the MCS-90 form is that if the loss is not covered on the auto policy, the insurance company will seek reimbursement from the insured. If the loss is covered, no reimbursement would be required.

You may be wondering, is there any way to have the potential for reimbursing your insurance carrier waived? Yes, yes there is! Some insurance carriers may offer endorsements to their auto policies that may waive the requirement to reimburse them for any loss – please contact your agent for further information, or if you have questions.

One specific endorsement that some carriers offer, which will waive the reimbursement requirement is the Broadened Auto Pollution – CA 99 48. This endorsement to commercial auto policies could possibly prevent an insured from having to reimburse an insurance carrier.

Another question you may be asking is am I required to have an MCS-90 form on file?  Per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) the following individuals/organizations are required to have an MCS-90:

  • Any motor carrier that participates in for-hire interstate commerce
  • Any private and for-hire motor carrier operating in-state that transports hazardous materials or portable tanks, or hopper type vehicles with a capacity above 3,500 gallons.
  • Any motor carrier who hauls intrastate (within their home state) whose products are then transported to another location out of state.
    • An example of this would be if you are intrastate motor carrier and haul logs to a supply depot, and then the logs are trucked to a mill in a different state – you would be considered an interstate motor carrier and would need an MCS90 on file.

Federal government requirements for any type of insurance are complex, and sometimes can be very difficult to navigate – the MCS-90 endorsement is no exception.

This article is meant to help guide & assist you in potentially determining if a MCS90 is required for your company. Please consult the FMCSA website, or contact your local Department of Transportation Enforcement Officer, to determine the exact federal requirements for your company.

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