Licensing Requirements for Charter-Party Carriers
Important information to consider before completing and submitting a charter-party carrier (TCP) application
Before submitting a Charter-Party Carrier application you must do the following:
If this is a Corporation, Limited Liability Company (LLC), or Limited Partnership (LP): You must have received your Statement of Information and Articles of Incorporation (Corp) or Articles of Organization (LLC). Visit www.sos.ca.gov/business-programs/business-entities/forms/
Apply to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Employer Pull Notice Unit for a Requestor Code: www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/?1dmy&urile=wcm:path:/dmv_content_en/dmv/vehindustry/epn/epnformlist
You must include the required documents with your application. You must also provide your phone number and email address on page 2 of the application.
Important Information Before You Apply
Before you decide to apply, please be aware of the various costs you would be responsible for as a charter-party carrier.
- Insurance: The cost of insurance typically has the largest impact on your business plan. Before you apply, Licensing staff advise that you shop and compare the rates and services provided by different insurers.
- Insurance tends to cost significantly more if you seek TCP authority without a vehicle, as opposed to including your vehicle information (Form PL664 and DMV commercial vehicle registration) with your application.
- To find insurers who make filings with the CPUC, look at the carriers on our web site at http://cpuc.ca.gov/tmis. Click on the File Number of any carrier; you will see detailed information about that carrier, including the name and address of its insurance company.
- All carriers must have public liability and property damage insurance on file with the CPUC – see General Order 115 for levels of insurance required for charter-party carriers.
- Carriers who have employees must also have workers’ compensation insurance on file with the CPUC.
- Information relating to vehicle liability, cargo, and workers’ compensation insurance policies for motor carriers of passengers and household goods must be filed with the Commission electronically. In order to use the Commission's insurance e-filing system, you must be a representative of an insurance company, surety company, or an authorized California Surplus Lines Broker. See the Insurance Requirements page for more information.
- Effective January 1, 2017, there are new requirements regarding workers' compensation insurance. Review the AB2883 letter for more information to comply to the new requirements.
- Application fee: Non-refundable. $1500 for a charter-party “A” certificate, $1000 for all other permit or certificate types
- Inspection fees: If you intend to operate a bus, be aware that there is an inspection fee due to the California Highway Patrol, currently set at $15 per vehicle. Effective January 1, 2018, Modified Limousines are subject to inspection as well. Review the PL-739C Modified Limousine Inspection Fee Statement Form under the Individual Forms Section below for more details.
- Controlled Substance and Alcohol Testing Program: Carriers must be enrolled in a controlled substance and alcohol testing program: Drug Consultant List
- Employer Pull Notice: Complete and submit forms INF 1104, accessible on the DMV's Employer Pull Notice Program Forms webpage. It may take approximately six weeks to receive a Pull Notice Contract.
- DMV Weight Certificate
- Secretary of State filings: If you intend to apply as a LLC, LP or Corporation, get your articles of incorporation, file that with the Secretary of State. If you don’t include this, your application may be returned.
- Airport licensing: If you intend to operate at an airport, you will need to contact the Ground Transportation Unit of each airport and inquire into the airport permitting process.
- Motor Carrier Profile with CHP: If you intend to operate equipment that would require CHP inspection (Buses, Modified Limos, etc), complete the CHP 362 Motor Carrier Profile and obtain a CA Number with the CHP prior to submitting your CPUC application.
Remember that filing fees are not refundable. Licensing staff advise that you not submit an application if you’re not certain you will be ready to start operating (and paying for all the necessary insurance) within 2-3 months.