Legislation Proposed Seeks to Increase Minimum Insurance Coverage for Trucking Companies
LAKEWOOD, CO – According to an online news report at kdvr.com, new legislation is seeking to increase the minimum insurance requirements of trucking companies.*
Following a deadly tractor-trailer accident caused by a man on Interstate 70 in Lakewood, Colorado, pursuing a claim against his employer may not be worth the effort. This is because his company, pursuant to federal law, is only required to carry $750,000 in liability insurance, which is exactly what the man’s employer carries.
A new law submitted by representatives from Illinois and Pennsylvania are seeking to change this. The two Democrats have introduced the Insurance Act, which is a measure that seeks to increase the insurance minimums so that they are updated to reflect inflation. According to the proposed bill, it would set the minimum insurance requirements to $4.9 million per accident.
The mandatory minimum coverage of $750,000 has not changed since 1980 when the initial Motor Carrier Act was passed.
"$750,000 isn't nearly enough to cover even the non-medical expenses," said the president-elect of the Academy of Truck Accident Attorneys and member of the American Association for Justice. The president-elect indicates that while medical expenses have dramatically increased since 1980, the price of motor carrier insurance has gone down. "It costs less now for the $750,000 in coverage in real terms than it did 40 years ago," he said.
The Motor Carrier Safety Act of 1980 was intended to increase insurance minimums pursuant to inflation but it never did. If the Insurance Act passes, the new minimum of $4.9 million would be subject to updates on a regular basis to follow levels of inflation.
Back in 2014, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration proposed a change to a rule that would increase the mandatory minimum insurance liability limits to $10 million. However, in 2017, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration backed off and chose not to pursue the rule change.
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