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What is a Motor Carrier Permit (MCP)?

The purpose of the MCP is to provide proof of a Motor Carrier’s CA# with the DMV. MCP verifies the motor carrier has been met all of the requirements for both registration and insurance. This will allow a business to commercially operate motor vehicles on California Highways. The MCP presents specific information regarding the motor carrier (e.g name, mailing address, USDOT number, CA# and effective/expiration dates of the permit).

Prospecting carriers must apply prior to beginning operations. In order for vehicles to be able to operate on California roadways, they must acquire an MCP. An MCP term lasts for 12-months. The term begins on the first day of the application month and expires on the last day of the 12th month.  The MCP will not issue until all requirements are met.

Who needs MCP?

  • Any person or entity who is paid to transport property in their motor vehicle not taking into account the vehicle size, type or weight (For-hire carrier).
  • Any person or entity operating a motor vehicle with a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating of 10,001 pounds or more. Also,  for business  purposes to transport their own property (Private carrier).
  • Operators of any vehicle or a combination of vehicles transporting hazardous materials.
  • Operators of a combination of a motor truck and trailer, semitrailers, pole or pipe dollies, auxiliary dollies, and logging dollies, that exceeds forty feet in length when coupled together.  For the purpose of an MCP, a “trailer” excludes camp trailers, utility trailers, and trailer coaches.
  • Operators of any motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicle and trailer for which the operation requires a commercial driver license, except vehicle combinations including camp trailers, utility trailers, and trailer coaches.

Who will not need a permit?

  • Vehicles operated by household goods and/or passenger carriers.
  • Vehicles operated by household goods carriers to transport used office, store, and institutional furniture. Fixtures when operated under a household goods carrier permit.
  • Pickup trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of fewer than 11,500 pounds, a removed weight of fewer than 8,001 pounds, and equipped with a box-type bed not going over 9 feet in length when operated in non-commercial circumstances.
  • Utility trailers, camp trailers, or trailer coaches.
  • Vehicles providing transportation of passengers only, a passenger stage corporation transporting baggage and express upon a passenger vehicle incidental to the transportation of passengers.
  • Vehicles used only for personal use and are 10,000 pounds gross vehicle weight rating or less.
  • Two-axle daily rental trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of fewer than 26,001 pounds when operated in non-commercial use.
  • Vehicles are exempt from vehicle registration fees.

Can the DMV Suspend a Permit? 

  • Failure to comply with CSAT requirements of federal law.
  • Failure to make copies of CSAT results and other records available to CHP.
  • Knowingly leasing, operating, dispatching, or otherwise utilizing vehicles from a carrier whose motor carrier permit is in suspension. Also, when the suspension deals with mostly or in part on the failure of the motor carrier to maintain any vehicle in safe operating condition.
  • Failure to register in the EPN program.
  • Suspension and/or revocation of an owner-operator’s driver’s license.
  • Failure to maintain liability and/or worker’s’ compensation insurance.

What happens if I operate as a motor carrier of property without MCP?

If one is caught operating without an MCP, they will receive a misdemeanor. The fine is punishable up to $2,500 or by imprisonment in the county jail for up to three months, or both. CHP may also find it necessary to impound your vehicle.

How do I obtain an MCP?

DOT Operating Authority will help you obtain MCP. But, before that we will help you get USDOT number, CA number, EPN and Insurance to be able to apply for MCP! Call today (888) 669-4383!

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