Strategies, Challenges, and Answers

Bobtail Insurance Provides Limited Coverage

Bobtail InsuranceTruckers and trucking companies do business under many different contractual arrangements.  Some truckers drive as employees of a single trucking company.  Those drivers operate the company’s truck and pull the company’s trailers.  However, a common business model involves a person who owns and operates his or her own truck (known as an owner-operator).  These owner-operators “lease on” to drive for a properly licensed and authorized motor carrier.  Lease agreements between the motor carrier and the driver can be exclusive or flexible.  But in order to comply with federal law, the lessee motor carrier motor carrier must have “control of and be responsible for” the leased vehicle.  49 U.S.C. § 14102(a)(4).  The purpose behind the law was to “protect the public from the tortious conduct of the often judgment-proof truck-lessor operators.  AmeriGas Propane, L.P. v. Landstar Ranger , Inc., 184 Cal. App. 4th 981, 994-95, 109 Cal. Rptr. 3d 686, 696 (2010).

So when a driver is pulling a load for the motor carrier, the “trucking insurance” is responsible to provide liability coverage. However, there are times when a trailer is not hitched to the tractor.  At those times, the driver is said to be operating “bobtail”.  Most leases require the driver to obtain “bobtail” or “non-trucking” coverage for times when the driver is operating outside of business of the motor carrier to whom the truck and driver are leased. [Continue reading]

Where An Insurance Company Breaches Its Duty To Defend, It Can Be Liable For An Excess Verdict Even If The Company Did Not Act In Bad Faith

Century Surety Co. v. Andrew

Ryan Pretner suffered critical injuries when he was hit by a truck driven by Michael Vasquez.  Mr. Vasquez’s truck was covered by two auto policies, his personal policy, and his business auto policy.  His personal insurance with Progressive had a … [Continue reading]

Motor Carrier Beats Driver’s Claim For Overtime Pay, AGAIN

Featherston case

They may not know the name of the law or the details, but employees that qualify are almost universally aware of their right to overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act.  29 USCS §206, 207.  The incentive of earning one-and-one-half hour’s pay … [Continue reading]

Season’s Greetings

I really enjoy this time of year.  It means that I get to spend more time with my family and splurge eating some foods that I would otherwise shun.I hope that all of the readers of the Nevada Law Blogs will also be sipping something warm, eating … [Continue reading]

Let’s Appreciate and Remember Our Veterans; on Veterans Day and Everyday

Officially we celebrate Veterans Day on November 11. Americans honor the brave men and women of the armed forces who risk their lives to protect our freedom. They include past and present members of the US Army, Navy, Marine Corps, National Guard, … [Continue reading]