Think your carrier’s liability policy protects you? Think again

Story by

Johnny Mccord

Tags /

  • Cargo
  • Freight
  • Insurance

In this on-demand economy, moving product from Point A to Point B—and ASAP—is critical. After all, your profit margins depend on delivering on the need, now. So, you post your load to the spot freight market and get it out the door fast, comforted by the knowledge that your valuable assets are covered by your carrier’s liability policy, right?


There’s a common misperception out there that once your carrier takes control of your product, you’ll be made whole should something go wrong.

All too often, that’s simply not the case.

Here’s what you should know about your carrier’s liability policy, the pros and cons of shipper’s interest policies, and the emerging per-load, all-risk option that better protects your business—and saves you money while doing so.

Carrier liability policies leave you exposed to risk

It’s important to understand a few things when it comes to motor carrier liability policies.

First, these policies are designed to be tremendously limited. They only cover loss or damage that occurs as a result of the carrier’s negligence.

Lose a load when a tractor-trailer flips in straight-line winds? You’re not covered. Cargo damaged because it’s not properly secured? Unless it’s a driver load/unload scenario, again, you’re not covered.

There are extensive defenses built into these carrier liability policies, so you’d be better off simply asking them what is covered—as that list is far, far shorter.

Now, consider a loss due to carrier negligence—perhaps it was a car-truck accident or a trailer maintenance issue. You must still prove the carrier was at fault—for an event at which you weren’t present. Not only is this hard to do, but it’s also a long, drawn-out process that takes, on average, 120 days to resolve.

And, even if you’re able to prove that your carrier’s liable, you still won’t be made whole. These carrier policies don’t pay full value—an important point many sadly miss. Rather, your settlement check will be determined by a weight percent ratio and also capped at the value of the policy.

In short, relying on carrier liability policies alone leaves you exposed to risk.

So, how do you protect yourself?

Shipper’s interest policies are a step in the right direction—but are still too slow and costly

By purchasing a traditional shipper’s interest policy, you better address your exposed risk, for sure. That said, they’re not a solution that meets the needs of an agile, on-demand economy—and they’re out of reach for some.


  • You pay a flat premium for your annual cover, regardless of exposed risk—meaning you often pay for coverage you don’t need
  • Manual claims processes move slowly, taking more than 30 days to settle—and, more often than not, months

For some shippers, this is a workable solution. For many others, though, it’s far too expensive and arduous to be a viable option.

Cutting-edge technologies, however, are paving a cost-effective and efficient path forward.

Digital evolution sets the stage for per-load cargo insurance

AI, predictive analytics, and other cutting-edge technologies have disrupted all manner of industries. Just consider the rise of Uber and Lyft.

Now, these same technologies are enabling us to drive an evolution in cargo insurance, as well.

At Loadsure, we’ve utilized predictive analytics underwriting to both dramatically reduce labor expenses, and to deliver real-time ratings and smart pricing. And, because we can process thousands of transactions a second—a scale that simply isn’t attainable through manual processes—we’re able to instantly create a vast risk pool that, ultimately, helps you eliminate the need for an annual cover and cut your cargo insurance costs.

The resulting benefits of our pay-as-you-go, all-risk cargo insurance policies speak for themselves:

  • It’s the most comprehensive coverage on the market, protecting you from physical loss or damage by an external cause—even those outside your carrier’s control
  • Coverage is applied door-to-door, protecting you from carrier coverage gaps—like damage that occurs during loading and unloading
  • You can purchase per-load coverage to address the risk you have and nothing more, helping you cut the bloated insurance costs associated with annual covers
  • You don’t have to prove carrier negligence to file a successful claim for lost or damaged goods
  • As a “first dollar policy,” you’re paid the full value of your lost or damaged goods, making you truly whole

What’s more, our fully digital claims handling process accelerates your settlement from weeks and months to hours—even minutes.

It’s clear that pay-as-you-go offers tremendous value to many shippers operating on the spot freight market. In fact, one shipper paid six-to-seven thousand dollars a year for an annual cover, despite only shipping 40 loads a year. By switching to our more granular approach to cargo insurance, that same shipper reduced its annual cargo insurance costs by four thousand dollars.

In short: No delays, no unnecessary questions. This is cargo insurance, simplified.

Today, as economic uncertainty is straining businesses to the max, and cutting costs and protecting cash flow becomes more important than ever, we’re proud to help shippers alleviate some of their pain.

After all, we’re in this together.