What Ending MC Numbers Means for the Trucking Industry

What Ending MC Numbers Means for the Trucking Industry

FMCSA wants to completely overhaul its verification processes and improve the customer experience; and this includes ending MC numbers.

The trucking industry has known about this since August 2013, when the FMCSA passed a final rule to establish the Unified Registration System (URS).

It was expected that docket numbers, including MC, MX, and FF numbers, would be discontinued on October 1, 2023.

Then the pandemic happened, and many things were delayed. But now the idea is back.

Why does FMCSA want to get rid of MC Numbers?

FMCSA’s goal is to reduce paperwork and create a single clearinghouse for information on motor carriers, brokers, and freight forwarders.

The agency wants to use USDOT numbers as the sole identifier for carriers, brokers, forwarders, and others, as well as eliminating arbitrary wait times and instituting a system that processes paperwork over the weekend and holidays automatically. 

Currently, a company’s authority is attached to the docket number (MC Number), but after the launch of URS, the authority registrations will be tied to the company’s DOT number, along with safety data.

This means that brokers and shippers can track a single number instead of two separate numbers, when they want to check whether a carrier is legal and has a good safety record.

But there is another reason.

The 2013 rule states: “FMCSA believes that combining…Agency information systems into the URS will improve the Agency’s ability to detect and prevent unscrupulous motor carriers that reinvent themselves to avoid compliance with regulations and enforcement actions.”

In other words, FMCSA hopes to use the URS to put a stop to “chameleon” carriers, who get shut down for safety violations and then open up again in the form of a new company with a different MC number.

[Related: Can Carriers Legally Have 2 DOT Numbers?]

When will MC Numbers go away?

At MATS 2024 (Mid-Atlantic Truck Show), FMCSA outlined proposed changes to overhaul the registration system.

This system will ask carriers questions and lead them to the correct form, while verifying information in real time.

This is expected to come online by October 1, 2025.

FMCSA’s changes will then ripple through load boards and other industry platforms shortly after.

If carriers fail to fill out an MCS-150, or pay UCR fees, it will result in the USDOT number going inactive.

Also, blanket companies (BOC-3s) will get accounts in the system, which entities can enter in to allow the BOC-3 to complete the forms for them. 

A mock-up of the new website was revealed at the Mid-Atlantic Truck Show (MATS) and there was a brief demo of how the system would work.

Are USDOT numbers transferable?

According to a recent Transport Topics article, “the rise in acquisitions ultimately is good since it gives small fleet owners a way out besides bankruptcy and puts their business in a position to scale up with another company.” This trend is likely to continue given the rise in insurance costs.

However, understanding what happens to DOT numbers during an acquisition or merger is important.

To answer the question, no, USDOT numbers are not transferable but operating authorities, or MC numbers, are transferable. This is because USDOT numbers are a unique identifier to track the safety history of a specific carrier. Transferring a USDOT number would have the effect of transferring the entire safety history of one entity to another separate entity. 

This means that if a merger or acquisition creates a new legal entity, a new USDOT number will be required as well.

New business? Then the DOT Essentials program is for you!

Our PSM DOT Essentials Program is a program designed to keep motor carriers compliant with the basic DOT regulations that nearly all carriers must follow.

Our team of DOT Compliance Specialists will manage and monitor your:

  • Drug and Alcohol Testing Requirements
  • Driver Qualification Files
  • New Driver Onboarding
  • Fuel Taxes
  • Licensing and Credentialing Renewals (Yearly)
  • Company Policies

Managing everything on your own is overwhelming and missing any little detail can lead to audits, fines, and other negative consequences.

We ensure that your company is following all the rules and regulations set by the FMCSA with a goal of saving you money by avoiding audits, fines, and hopefully lowering insurance premiums.

Interested? Learn more by filling out the form below. 

Questions about DOT Compliance, Licensing, Audits, Programs, etc.?

Our DOT Specialists are here to help!

Related news

Monthly Newsletter

June 13, 2024

Watch the most recent episode for a Quick Trucking News Update

What are you searching for?

Related Services

Is DOT Compliance your Top Priority?

Our DOT Compliance Programs ensure it is your top priority and keeps your business running.

Subscribe to our Monthly Newsletter

Receive the latest transportation and trucking industry information about FMCSA and DOT Audits, Regulations, etc.

Social Media

Related news

Monthly Newsletter

June 13, 2024

Watch the most recent episode for a Quick Trucking News Update