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U.S. DOT Updates

Any time a carrier or other regulated entity changes its name or address, or other details in their record, they should update their US DOT and operating authority record with FMCSA in a timely manner. In addition, FMCSA requires all entities under its jurisdiction to update their information every two years.  This is mandated as per CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS TITLE 49 SECTION 390.19

Biennial Updates 

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires all entities under its jurisdiction to update their information every two years. You are required to provide this update every two years even if your company has not changed its information, has ceased interstate operations since the last update, or is no longer in business and you did not notify FMCSA.

Failure to complete a Biennial Update will result in deactivation of your USDOT number and may result in civil penalties of up to $1,000 per day, not to exceed $10,000.

What is the Deadline to Update?

Filing schedule: Each motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider must file the appropriate form at the following times:

  • Before it begins operations; and
  • Every 24 months according to the following schedule:
USDOT number ending in: Must file by last day of:
1 January
2 February
3 March
4 April
5 May
6 June
7 July
8 August
9 September
0 October

If the next-to-last digit of its USDOT Number is odd, the motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider shall file its update in every odd-numbered calendar year. If the next-to-last digit of the USDOT Number is even, the motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider shall file its update in every even-numbered calendar year.

Using this site for USDOT number registration and updates is optional, and you can choose to register directly with the FMCSA. This website is managed by a private company offering a registration and renewal services for an extra fee.


Do I Need a DOT Number?

You are required to obtain a USDOT number if you have a vehicle that:

  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating, or gross vehicle weight or gross combination weight, of 4,536 kg (10,001 pounds) or more, whichever is greater; or
  • Is designed or used to transport more than 8 passengers (including the driver) for compensation; or
  • Is designed or used to transport more than 15 passengers, including the driver, and is not used to transport passengers for compensation;
  • Is used to transport the types and quantities of hazardous materials requiring a safety permit in intrastate commerce (see 49 CFR 385.403).

and is involved in Interstate commerce. Apart from federal regulations, some states require their intrastate commercial motor vehicle registrants to obtain a USDOT Number.

Authority to Operate (MC Number)

In general, companies that do the following are required to have interstate Operating Authority (MC number) in addition to a DOT number:

  • Transport passengers in interstate commerce (for a fee or other compensation, whether direct or indirect)
  • Transport federally-regulated commodities owned by others or arranging for their transport, (for a fee or other compensation, in interstate commerce)
Unified Carrier Registration ( UCR )

The federal Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Agreement requires US DOT Number holders involved in interstate commerce and/or transporting interstate goods  to register and pay annual fees based on their fleet size.

UCR is required for private and for hire interstate motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders and leasing companies. Mandated as per 49 U.S. Code § 14504a.

The Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) is a federal system established by the United States Department of Transportation, obligating drivers of commercial vehicles, motor carriers, and other trucking companies engaged in interstate or international travel to possess a UCR registration.

If you operate a commercial vehicle involved in transporting goods across state lines, it is mandatory to undergo UCR filing. This requirement encompasses drivers handling freight such as foods, cargo, and other goods for interstate shipment.

Employees of motor carrier companies and brokers must ensure UCR registration and compliance to avoid fines or penalties. Although the Unified Carrier Registration Program is federally mandated, not every state participates. Residents of states like the District of Columbia, New Jersey, Florida, Maryland, Oregon, Arizona, Hawaii, Vermont, Wyoming and Nevada are exempt from the program, but they still need to file a UCR registration. In such cases, individuals must register from the nearest participating state.

Starting January 1, 2024, trucking companies failing to comply with Unified Carrier Registration may face citations, fines, and penalties from individual states, the Department of Transportation (DOT), and the Unified Carrier Registration board. Non-compliance also results in the inability to renew truck registrations and International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA). To ensure complete compliance, freight hauling companies are advised to verify the number of trucks requiring registration, matching the quantity listed on the last-filed MCS-150 / Biennial Update, as this affects filing fees and truck tier pricing.

For brokers, it is recommended to complete registration under the 1-2 trucks section if involved in interstate activity (brokering loads outside the state of operation). The total fee at checkout includes the UCR fee set by the UCR board for the year, the number of trucks registered, service charges, and potential additional fees for processing time.

This website is independent of the Unified Carrier Registration Plan and is managed by a private company offering a registration service for an extra fee. Using this site for UCR registration is optional, and you can choose to register directly with the UCR Plan at www.ucr.gov.




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