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September 15, 2022

BOC-3 Form Demystified: 7 Facts You Must Know About It Before Filing

There are a lot of critical details related to your BOC-3 form that as a transportation company you should be aware of. According to the federal motor carrier safety administration, this requirement is essential if you want to obtain your operating authority. It is a requirement that you have to fulfill if you want to drive your commercial vehicles across the country for business. If you are a part of the US trucking industry, you will have to abide by all these rules and regulations. 

You must file your BOC-3 form with the FMCSA without fail. If you want to continue to operate as a motor carrier or broker or freight forwarder, you are required to fulfill this unavoidable responsibility. But it tends to get very overwhelming for a lot of businesses. And this is primarily because BOC-3 filing involves a lot of legal documents and their understanding. It can be a little complicated, especially if you have never done this before. The following section talks about a lot of the things directly associated with BOC-3 form filing and what you should do as a business entity governed by the US department of transportation and the federal motor carrier safety administration.

1. Let’s Understand The BOC-3 Form

The BOC-3 form is also called the “blanket of coverage” form. It is a requirement laid down by the FMCSA for all transportation companies functioning in the US in interstate commercial operations. By filling out this form, you are going to designate a person or an office and allow them to accept any legal papers on your behalf, especially in the states where you conduct business.

For example, if you are traveling through Boston, it is required of you to have a BOC-3 agent in Massachusetts. The same will be the case in any other major city or state across the USA. These documents can be any court proceedings, bills, and invoices that are relevant to your business.

2. BOC-3 Coverage – What All You Should Know

BOC-3 is simply a “blanket of coverage” and it assigns a business entity or a person to provide trucking coverage to you in all 50 states. After you have filed your BOC-3 form with the federal body, you are required to keep a copy of the same with you at all times and in your principal place of business as well including the commercial vehicles that you use.

3. What Is A BOC-3 Process Agent And What Does He Do?

A BOC-3 process agent is exactly what he does. It is an individual or a commercial entity that has been appointed by you to receive legal documents on your behalf. If it is a complaint or a legal summon or any other document or invoice, the BOC-3 agent is going to receive it on your behalf if the communication has been made outside of your home state.

For example, if you receive this documentation in Texas, Louisiana, or Oklahoma, you will have to assign somebody as your BOC-3 process agent over there. Also, you will have to make sure that your agent is available in that place during regular business hours to receive the documentation.

4. Filing Your Own BOC-3 Form

Ideally, you are not allowed to file your own BOC-3 form if you are a motor carrier involved in the business of hauling loads in interstate commerce. The reason is very simple. If you are on the road regularly or if there is no physical location of your business, the government will need some stable address or place of business where they can contact you. So these process agents are available in those locations that you have mentioned in your form. However, if you want to file your own BOC3, you have to be either a broker or a freight forwarder but then you will have to file for each primary state where you operate. And the government also states that you cannot file your BOC-3 form for yourself if you drive a truck for your company.

5. Do You Need To Have A BOC-3?

According to the federal motor carrier safety administration, all motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders, and other entities that are governed by the department of transportation and are involved in interstate commerce should have a BOC-3 on file with the federal authority. This is mandatory if you want your operating authority to be granted. Remember, if you want to reinstate your MC or FF number in case it has been revoked, you will need to have a BOC-3 done. For that, you will need access to the following information:

  • The registered name (exact) and address of your trucking company
  • The name and title of the person who you have authorized to sign on your behalf or on behalf of your company) it can be you, or the chairperson, or the CEO
  • The name and full address of the process agent that you have selected for each state

Important note: The BOC -3 Form is not going to expire. This is a very common misconception among trucking companies and everyone involved in the trucking industry. The FMCSA clearly states that the BOC-3 does not expire. It remains on your account and continues to be there until you either initiate a name change or want to carry out a reinstatement.

6. Situations When You Need To Re-File A BOC -3

Yes, that can happen as well. You might have to file your BOC-3 all over again if there is a name change or if you have transferred authority within your company to a different person.

For example, if there has been any other change in the details of your company or the information that you have provided on your previous BOC-3 form, you will have to file it again with the changed information.

7. When You’re Looking To Start A New Business?

Your BOC-3 form is a necessary legal requirement that you must fill out if you want to start a new business. It becomes very critical for any new entrant to wrap his head around the various requirements laid down by the major authorities. It is advised to get in touch with your DOT compliance service provider or third party facilitator for more information. It is always better to maintain DOT compliance through a dependable and experienced TPA. Do you have one?

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