FMCSA Registration Process for Freight Forwarders

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In addition to filing the appropriate form in the OP-1 series, all applicants for motor carrier, forwarder, and broker authorities must have specific insurance and legal process agent documents on file before the FMCSA will issue the actual authorities. The required filings vary, based on the types of registrations involved. Below is a list of pre-registration forms, followed by an explanation of which types of registrants are subject to filing those forms. Liability and cargo insurance forms must be submitted directly by the home office of the insurance company furnishing the coverage. The FMCSA does not furnish copies of insurance forms.

BMC-91 or BMC-91XPublic liability insurance (bodily injury/property damage/environmental restoration)
  • Motor Contract Carrier and Common Carrier
  • Freight Forwarder (Note: Non-vehicle operating freight forwarders may seek waiver of this requirement.)
  • Freight:–$750,000 – $5,000,000, depending on commodities transported; $300,000 for non-hazardous freight moved only in vehicles weighing under 10,001 lbs.
  • Passengers:–$5,000,000; $1,500,000 for registrants operating only vehicles with seating capacity of 15 or fewer passengers.
  • Cargo insurance–$5,000 per vehicle
  • $10,000 per occurrence
  • Motor Common Carrier
  • Freight Forwarder
BMC-84 or BMC-85
  • Surety Bond–as of October 1, 2013, the amount is $75,000
  • Trust Fund Agreement–as of October 1, 2013, the amount is $75,000
Freight Forwarder
BOC-3Legal Process AgentsAll Authorities

FMCSA Registration Process Applicants should be prepared to contact their agents to request filing of the required forms immediately after obtaining their designated docket number. These filings must be received within 90 days after the FMCSA has published public notice of intention to register the applicant. (Applicants will be notified by letter of their docket number and date of publication in the FMCSA Office of Motor Carriers Register.) FMCSA Registration Process Applicants are cautioned to ensure that the name and address of the business as set out in all pre-registration filings matches exactly the information provided in their Form OP-1 filings.

Any deviation will result in rejection of the supplemental pre-registration filings.

All insurance/process agent filings should be mailed directly to the FMCSA Insurance Team, Office of Registration and Safety Information, MC-RS, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. For information on the status of insurance filings, please call 1-866-635-0637. This automated response system is accessible at all times.

Applicants for authority to operate as motor carriers of household goods or freight forwarders of household goods also must offer arbitration as a means of settling loss and damage disputes on collect-on-delivery shipments. (See 49 U.S.C. 14708.)

Failure to comply promptly with all pre-registration requirements will result in dismissal of the application. Refunds of filing fees are not permitted.

REMINDERS: After obtaining their registration documents, applicants must register with every state through which they will travel in conducting business. To begin this process, applicants should contact the state transportation body (usually located in the capital city) in which the business is headquartered. Copies of the FMCSA and appropriate State registration documents must be carried in each vehicle performing FMCSA authorized operations.


Fee Schedule effective March 1999

Permanent Authority…………………………………….$300.00

Notice of Name Change………………………………….$14.00

NOTE: Separate fees must be submitted for each kind of authority sought. For instance, requests for a motor common carrier certificate and motor contract carrier permit are subject to two $300 fees. Please note that there are NO REFUNDS for mistaken applications.

Payment may be combined. Applications and other filings accompanied by improper fees will not be accepted. Checks should be made payable to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and mailed to P. O. BOX 530226, Atlanta, GA, 30353-0226; express mail should be sent to Bank of America, Lockbox Number 530226, 1075 Loop Road, Atlanta, GA, 30337. Credit card payments should be mailed to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Office of Registration and Safety Information, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. Credit card applicants can also apply online at

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FMCSA Registration Process