How to Get a DOT Number – Why is Important That You Hire Cross Country Movers That Have It

Are you planning a cross-country move and wondering how to get a DOT number from a potential mover? In the realm of long-distance moving, the Department of Transportation (DOT) number plays a pivotal role in ensuring the safety and reliability of any moving company. We’ll guide you through how to obtain a DOT number and shed light on why it’s vital to entrust your move to cross-country movers who possess this essential credential for a seamless and stress-free relocation experience.

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September 6, 2023 Posted in Moving Tips

How to get a DOT number of potential moving companies? To obtain the DOT number of potential movers, ask them directly or check their website for it. You can also verify it on the FMCSA website, enter the company’s name in the search bar, and review the company’s safety information and operating status for added confidence in your choice.

What is the DOT Number?

Relocating to another state is a complicated endeavor, and you will probably have to hire movers for professional long-distance moving services. However, there are thousands of relocation companies in the USA, and finding the most reliable one can be tricky. This is where the DOT number comes in.

A DOT number, short for the Department of Transportation number, is a unique identifier assigned to commercial vehicles and transportation companies involved in interstate operations. In essence, this is the number a legitimate company will have to have, so if you wish to avoid relocation scammers and be protected by law, you need to check whether the company has this number or not.

Also, having a DOT number is crucial for cross-country moving companies as it signifies their commitment to safety and adherence to federal regulations.

The responsibility of issuing DOT numbers falls under the purview of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), a division of the US Department of Transportation. The FMCSA is dedicated to enhancing road safety and preventing commercial motor vehicle-related accidents. It oversees the issuance and monitoring of DOT numbers to ensure that cross-country movers and other transportation companies meet the required safety standards.

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What is The Importance of Hiring Cross Country Movers with a DOT Number

Once you decide where to move, one of the first things you will have to do is to organize the relocation. This means you will probably have to hire a long-distance moving company. Naturally, you would want to choose long-distance movers that are legal in all aspects.

A DOT number is of paramount importance due to the legal compliance it ensures. The Department of Transportation (DOT) number signifies that the moving company adheres to federal regulations and safety standards for interstate operations. This compliance offers you peace of mind, knowing that your belongings are in the hands of a licensed and regulated moving company. Additionally, DOT-registered movers are more likely to have appropriate insurance coverage, protecting you from potential liabilities during the cross-country move.


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DOT Number Ensures Adherence to Safety Regulations

When you hire cross-country movers with a DOT number, you can be confident that they prioritize safety. The DOT number signifies that the relocation company complies with strict safety regulations set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. These regulations cover various aspects of the relocation process, including driver qualifications, vehicle maintenance, and cargo securement.

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It Shows Professionalism and Reliability

A company with a valid DOT number demonstrates professionalism and reliability. Obtaining a DOT number involves meeting specific criteria, such as insurance requirements and financial responsibility. This process separates legitimate and dedicated movers from unscrupulous operators. Choosing a DOT-registered mover ensures you are dealing with a legitimate business that takes its responsibilities seriously.

Such companies are more likely to have trained and experienced personnel, well-maintained equipment, and a track record of successful cross-country moves. The presence of a DOT number instills confidence in their ability to handle your belongings with care and ensures a smooth and efficient relocation from start to finish.

What Are the Potential Risks of Hiring Uninsured Movers?

As you can see, by hiring movers with a DOT number, you will be protected by federal law, meaning if anything goes wrong, you will be entitled to take legal action against that business. Also, reputable companies like Trico Long Distance Movers have DOT numbers and also offer insurance to their customers.

According to law, companies must offer basic insurance that is included in the price of the move. This insurance is called Mandatory Liability Coverage and gives reimbursement of 60 cents for each pound of damaged item. However, some companies go even further and offer Full Value Replacement Insurance where reimbursement will be in that item’s full value.

Depending on the relocation budget, you will choose the insurance that fits your needs the most. If you opt for a company that doesn’t have insurance, here are the risks you will be exposed to:

  • Property damage – Uninsured movers may lack the necessary resources to cover damages to your belongings during the move. If accidents or mishaps occur, you could end up bearing the financial burden of repairing or replacing damaged items.
  • Scams and fraud – Uninsured movers may be more prone to engaging in fraudulent practices. They might provide low quotes initially but demand additional payments during the move or hold your belongings hostage until you pay inflated prices.
  • Unreliable services – Hiring uninsured movers means you have no recourse if they fail to show up on a moving day or cancel at the last minute. This lack of reliability can lead to tremendous stress and inconvenience during a cross-country move.
  • No recourse for loss or theft – If your belongings go missing or are stolen during the move, uninsured movers won’t have the means to compensate you for the loss. You might end up losing valuable possessions without any recourse.
  • Lack of professionalism – Uninsured movers might lack the necessary training and experience required for a smooth and efficient move. This can result in subpar services, mishandling of items, and an overall unpleasant relocation experience.
  • Legal implications – Hiring uninsured movers could lead to legal issues if accidents or disputes arise during the move. Without proper insurance, you may find yourself entangled in costly legal battles to resolve any problems that occur.

How to Get a DOT Number? What Should Companies Do?

Obtaining a DOT number is a crucial step for companies engaged in cross-country moving and other interstate operations. So, how to get a USDOT number for a truck? Well, to apply for a DOT number, companies must be involved in interstate commerce, transporting passengers or goods across state lines. The application process requires gathering specific documentation, including ownership details, business address, contact information, and moving truck specifics.

Companies can apply through the FMCSA website, completing an online form that includes safety compliance and financial responsibility inquiries. And if you wonder how much does it cost to get a DOT number, it’s typically free of charge.

Step-By-Step Guide to Obtaining a DOT Number

If you own a relocation company and want to become a mover that relocates people across the country, here are step-by-step instructions on how to apply for a DOT number:

  • Determine eligibility – The company must engage in interstate commerce, such as transporting goods or passengers across state lines, to be eligible for a DOT number.
  • Gather information – Prepare all necessary information, including the company’s legal name, physical address, contact details, and ownership structure.
  • Vehicle details – Collect information about the vehicles used for transportation, including make, model, year, and VINs.
  • Insurance requirements – Ensure the company meets the required insurance levels as per FMCSA regulations.
  • Visit FMCSA website – Go to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website to access the online application portal.
  • Apply online – Complete the online application form with accurate and up-to-date information. Double-check all entries before submission.
  • Safety compliance – Answer questions regarding safety compliance and ensure you meet the FMCSA’s safety standards.
  • Financial responsibility – Provide necessary financial responsibility information as required during the application process.
  • Review and submit – Review the application thoroughly, ensuring all details are correct. Submit the application electronically.
  • Application verification – The FMCSA will review the application for completeness and accuracy.
  • DOT Number assignment – Once approved, you will receive a DOT number, which you must display on all your commercial vehicles.
  • Record keeping – Maintain records and documents related to your DOT number for compliance purposes.
  • Stay updated – Keep abreast of any regulatory changes or updates from the FMCSA that may affect your DOT number status.

Aside From the DOT Number, What Else Should You Check to See if the Company Is Legit?

Relocating to a new state is stressful, but it would be even more stressful if you stumble upon scammers. This is why it is crucial to check whether your movers are legit and will provide you with a stress-free move. Checking the DOT number is just one part of ensuring their legitimacy. Several other crucial factors should be verified to make an informed decision.

First and foremost, confirm that the company holds the necessary licenses and credentials to operate legally, and look for certifications from reputable industry organizations. Additionally, check if the company has adequate insurance coverage, including liability and cargo insurance, to protect belongings in case of any damage or loss during transit.

Also, one indicator of professionalism is if the company can offer you all the services you need. Reputable movers often provide various options, such as packing services to ensure the safe handling of belongings, storage solutions for temporary or long-term storage, and specialized services for delicate or valuable items.

Their ability to cater to all unique requirements shows their commitment to providing a stress-free and efficient relocation experience. Also, most reputable companies like Trico Long Distance Movers will offer car shipping services as well, so you don’t have to worry about getting reliable auto transport quotes aside from moving quotes.

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From car shipping to packing, make sure the company can provide you with everything you need

Check the Company’s Reputation

Another important factor you need to consider when moving and choosing movers is their reputation and customer satisfaction. Reading reviews and testimonials from previous customers can offer insights into the company’s reputation and customer satisfaction levels. Consider the company’s years of experience, as longevity in the industry often indicates reliability and expertise.

Evaluate the company’s customer service responsiveness and professionalism, as clear communication is vital throughout the moving process. If possible, visit the company’s facilities or request an in-person estimate to gauge their professionalism and equipment.

Legitimate companies should have a professional website and a strong online presence. Check the company’s complaint history with organizations like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) or the FMCSA and look for patterns of complaints and how the company addressed them.

Lastly, ensure that the company provides a clear and detailed contract outlining the terms of service and any guarantees or warranties.

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Professional and reliable long-distance movers are guaranteed to provide you with a stress-free move

Give Trico Long Distance Movers a Call and Enjoy Our Reliable Services

Cross-country moving can be a hard and challenging task, but with Trico Long Distance Movers, you can leave the stress behind. As highlighted in our comprehensive guide, checking the legitimacy of a moving company is crucial to ensure a smooth and hassle-free move. Trico Long Distance Movers excels in all aspects of professionalism and reliability, providing you with a stress-free experience from start to finish.

With the necessary licenses and credentials, extensive insurance coverage, and a proven track record of satisfied customers, you can trust that your belongings are in safe hands. Our comprehensive range of services, transparent pricing, and excellent customer support make us the ideal choice for your cross-country move. So don’t look for long-distance movers near me, just contact us today and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a reliable and trusted moving partner.


How Long Does It Take To Obtain a DOT Number?

The processing time for obtaining a DOT number can vary. Typically, once you submit the application to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), it takes around 20 to 25 business days for approval. However, during peak seasons, it may take longer. It’s best to apply well in advance of your intended schedule.

Can I Operate Without a DOT Number?

No, if your company engages in interstate commerce, you must have a DOT number. Operating without one is illegal, and it can result in severe penalties and fines. Additionally, it could jeopardize the safety of your operations and your customer’s belongings.

What Are the Penalties for Non-compliance?

Operating without a DOT number or failing to comply with safety regulations can lead to significant penalties. These penalties may include fines ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars per violation. In some cases, the FMCSA may also shut down non-compliant operations until the company addresses the safety issues.

How Can I Verify if a Moving Company Has a DOT Number?

To verify if a moving company has a DOT number, visit the FMCSA’s website and use the Safety and Fitness Electronic Records (SAFER) System. Enter the company’s name or DOT number in the search bar to access their safety information and operating status. This verification process ensures you are dealing with a legitimate and compliant moving company.

Daisy Wilson

Daisy was born in Salt Lake City and in her free time, she writes about moving and watches Charmed.



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