The Importance of MCS-90 After a Truck Accident
MCS-90 is not a common term, but it is important to know if you are ever involved in an accident with a commercial truck. For example, suppose the at-fault truck driver or trucking company does not have the means to compensate you, or their insurance company denies your accident claim. In that case, MCS-90 will be critical.
What Is the MCS-90?
The “MCS-90 endorsement,” is an amendment to a commercial auto insurance policy, guaranteeing a minimum amount of compensation to any individual injured in an accident caused by a truck driver or trucking company. Therefore, it provides accident coverage when an accident is excluded from auto liability insurance coverage, and all commercial motor carriers must have it. Under the Motor Carrier Act of 1980, trucking companies must register with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and prove they have the financial means to pay for any damages they or their drivers cause. To do so, trucking companies typically provide an MCS-90 endorsement.
When the MCS-90 Endorsement Applies
To recover compensation for a truck accident under an MCS-90 endorsement, the following elements must be present in your case:
- You do not work as an employee or independent contractor for the trucking company.
- The truck operates in multiple states.
- The cause of the accident is excluded from the primary insurance policy’s coverage.
- The trucking company is responsible for causing the collision.
- The truck accident directly caused your injuries.
- You do not have another source of compensation for your injuries and other accident-related losses.
In this type of accident, you can recover compensation up to policy limits of the MCS-90 endorsement.
Minimum MCS-90 Endorsement Coverage Requirements
Under federal regulations, the minimum liability coverage requirements for MCS-90 endorsements are as follows:
- $750,000 when transporting non-hazardous loads.
- $1 million when transporting hazardous substances.
- $5 million when carrying specific hazardous substances.
- $5 million for small trucks transporting hazardous substances.
The more dangerous the materials being transported, the higher the minimum liability requirements. However, most commercial vehicles on the road are transporting non-hazardous loads. Therefore, the minimum coverage requirement is lower to make the MCS-90 endorsement more affordable for trucking companies.
Can I Recover Compensation Under the MCS-90 Endorsement if My Damages Exceed Policy Limits?
If your damages caused by an accident with a commercial truck exceed the truck driver or trucking company’s insurance policy limits, the insurance company does not have to pay the difference. The MCS-90 endorsement is specifically meant to provide coverage when none is available. As a result, it cannot be used as a resource for further compensation beyond policy limits. Your options in that situation would be to sue the at-fault party personally or pursue a claim against another party that contributed to the accident. However, even if you win, there is no guarantee that the at-fault party will have the money or assets to completely cover your damages.
An Experienced Truck Accident Attorney Can Help
Truck accident cases are significantly complex, especially when they involve a lack of insurance coverage and the MCS-90 endorsement. Arrange a free consultation with our Atlanta Truck Accident Lawyer to discuss your legal options today.