Bobtail Truck Insurance (Non-Trucking Liability)

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Get the right commercial truck insurance that meets your needs.

Bobtail Insurance Coverage (also called “Non-Trucking Liability Insurance”) protects the owner-operator against physical damage and auto liability to a third party while operating a trailer or hauling a trailer loaded with goods.

Most states require NTL to be signed by the transport provider with whom a lease agreement has been signed. This coverage closes a possible hole for trailers used for purposes other than business and aids in defending the primary liability policy.

Bobtail vs Non-Trucking Liability

The Bobtail Insurance policy provides coverage for trucks operated without trailers, commonly known as bobtailing. Regardless of whether the truck is being dispatched, bobtail insurance covers the vehicle only when it is not connected to a trailer.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance, in the event of an accident involving a non-trucking vehicle while the driver/truck is off duty, will cover property damage or bodily injury. The coverage comes in the form of an endorsement on business insurance and is applicable with or without a trailer.

What does Bobtail Insurance cover?

If you are traveling without towing a trailer or other kind of freight, your semi-truck and you are covered by bobtail trucking insurance. For instance, you could need to pick up a shipment in Sacramento for a different carrier after dropping off one in San Francisco.

Bobtail Insurance is the policy for you if:

Bobtail Insurance is NOT the policy for you if:

Who Needs Non-Trucking Liability Coverage?

No matter when you drive your truck, you need insurance. Your trucker limited liability insurance only provides protection if you are hauling a trailer or driving a truck under someone else’s trucking authority; you need separate coverage for all other driving circumstances.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is the policy for you if:

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is NOT the policy for you if:

What Does Bobtail Insurance Cover?

Bobtail insurance covers expenses related to bodily injury or property damage to a third party. In order for coverage under this policy to take effect, you must not be using your truck for commercial reasons.

Bobtail insurance typically covers:

  1. Liability Protection: It provides liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage that the trucker may cause while operating the truck without a trailer.

  2. Legal Expenses: It may cover legal expenses if the trucker is sued as a result of an accident while bobtailing.

It’s important to note that bobtail insurance is different from primary liability insurance, which covers the trucker while they are under dispatch and hauling a load. Bobtail insurance fills the coverage gap when the trucker is driving the truck without a trailer.

Truckers often purchase bobtail insurance to ensure they have continuous liability coverage, even when they are not actively working for a motor carrier. This type of insurance is especially relevant for owner-operators or independent truck drivers who may use their trucks for personal reasons when not actively hauling freight.

Additionally, we can provide coverage for returns after pickups or departures from the motor carrier depending on the current situation.

What about the policyholder's damages?

Your bobtail policy covers the third-party expenses, but what about your physical damage policy?

If you’re an owner-operator operating under lease to a motor carrier that covers your primary liability, you’ll probably have to carry physical damage insurance to protect the truck if the motor carrier does not cover it.

So, in the event of an accident due to collision, overturn, theft, vandalism, or natural calamity, the company will cover damages to your truck, if you keep physical damage on your policy.

Bobtail Insurance: What Does It Cost?

Bobtail insurance is typically less expensive since it is less comprehensive than other trucking insurance policies. The cost of this policy will be as follows:

Sample Price Quote for Bobtail/Non-Trucking Liability and Physical Damage Insurance (1 Truck, 1 Driver Operation located in New Jersey)

Truck Value: $40,000

We can assist you if you’re looking for auto liability coverage for an owner/operator. We will help you in calculating the entire cost of your bobtail insurance after reviewing the following factors:

Bobtail Coverage: What Are The Limits?

The greatest sum that can be awarded in a given claim or policy period is known as the limit of an insurance policy. The limitations in this situation represent the highest amount an insurance company will pay for third-party harm including medical expenses, costs to replace, and costs to repair the damage
A typical non-trucking policy has:

Invest More In Your Business With NITIC As Your Bobtail Insurer

You won’t find a better place online that offers a wider selection of truckers insurance coverages for your trucking insurance needs, including bobtail or non-trucking liability insurance. All of your requirements and demands will be met by our lines of coverage, which include physical damage, auto liability, and cargo insurance, at good rates with excellent claim service, individualized help for owner-operators, and quick response.

If you need truckers insurance or commercial vehicle insurance, give us a call at any time.


Sheri is the best customer service rep around. Very pleasant and very informative.



Bobtail Insurance FAQs

When you use your truck for personal travel, you are protected by non-trucking liability insurance. The insurance covers third-party property damage and personal injuries. On the contrary, if you are using the truck for business purposes, then this insurance would no longer be liable.
The motor carrier’s liability insurance often only protects you when you’re being under dispatch. You should carry bobtail insurance if you drive outside of work for personal reasons. Talk about this coverage with the business you’re leasing from. Some have more stringent standards than others.
If you choose physical damage insurance in addition to bobtail insurance, you will only be issued one bill rather than two.

The sole difference between bobtail insurance and non-trucking liability insurance is how the trailer is connected to the truck.

In the bobtail insurance, if the truck is not pulled by a trailer at all, it will cover the limited liability protection, regardless of whether your truck is dispatched or not.

When you purchase non-trucking insurance, it covers you regardless of whether the truck is hauling a trailer or not.

Yes. By allowing you to transfer your bobtail coverage between leases, we help you save time and money. Spend more time driving on road and less time doing paperwork.

The total cost of bobtail insurance varies depending on a variety of variables, including lease agreement, driver history, claims history, number of claims, number of years with a CDL, driving experience, and more. We can determine the precise amount of your liability coverage once we have looked over all of these issues. Call us for the best quote.

Brokers of freight are exempt from purchasing bobtail insurance. Contingency auto liability insurance is the greatest option for them. It comes into play when freight brokers are held responsible for injuries suffered or property damage caused by a motor carrier due to the carrier’s inability to cover the claim under its own policy.

The best course of action is to obtain temporary bobtail insurance if all you worry about is passing your DOT (Department Of Transportation) inspection. The normal duration of a temporary bobtail or non-trucking liability policy is 30 days, and it provides the same level of protection as a regular NTL policy.

Anytime you are hauling a loaded trailer or working for a motor carrier, this coverage does not apply. The main differential is that you aren’t allowed to do anything that generates income. You must have primary auto liability insurance if you are involved in business activity.

If you are operating under your own power, you are probably already protected when your trailer is separated by your primary liability insurance. You wouldn’t require non-trucking liability coverage in such a scenario. Moreover, it’s an interesting point, and you should constantly ensure you have protection against the possibilities that may occur in your company. You don’t want to gamble with your financial security.