Unified Carrier Registration (UCR)

Notice to Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Carriers, Brokers and Freight Forwarders:

2017 UCR fees are now being accepted. The PUC mailed notices to motor carriers, brokers and freight forwarders on October 4, 2016. The PUC encourages payment of the 2017 UCR fee by December 31, 2016 in order to avoid fines for failure to register.

Overview

The Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Act went into effect on Jan. 1, 2007. Pennsylvania, through the PUC,  participates in the UCR program.  Pennsylvania is the base state for all businesses with their principal place of business located in Pennsylvania, as reported on their Federal Motor Carrier Identification Report (MCS-150). Carriers are strongly urged to update the information on their MCS-150 prior to filing the UCR registration. This can be completed on-line at http://portal.fmcsa.dot.gov/.

The UCR Act requires motor carriers (including for-hire, private and exempt motor carriers), leasing companies, freight forwarders, and brokers that operate in interstate commerce to register with the program and pay a fee. These fees will fund motor carrier safety and enforcement programs. The UCR Act is not applicable to businesses whose operations are wholly intrastate. The UCR fees range from $76 to $73,346 for motor carriers, and are a flat $76 for freight forwarders, brokers, and leasing companies. The fees are based upon the type of business, and additionally for motor carriers, the size of their fleet.

Further information on the UCR Act can be found at www.ucr.in.gov. You may also direct questions to the inspection division of the Bureau of Investigation and Enforcement at (717) 783-3846 or (717) 783-5934.

Instructions for 2015 UCR Electronic Filing  - If registering for the UCR program electronically, you may use these instructions for guidance.

 

Notices

2017 Notice to PA Carriers, Brokers and Leasing Companies

2016 Notice to PA Carriers, Brokers and Leasing Companies

2015 Notice to PA Freight Forwarders
2015 Notice to PA Carriers, Brokers and Leasing Companies

 

Motor Carriers

Motor carriers that operate in interstate commerce must register and pay a UCR annual fee.  The fee is based on the size of commercial motor vehicles (count only power units) in the carrier's fleet. Due to a change in the law, trailers are not included in calculating the size of the carrier's fleet.  If a motor carrier operates motor vehicles in interstate commerce but not commercial motor vehicles as defined below, the carrier is still required to register and pay the lowest UCR fee ($76.00). 

For the purposes of the UCR Act, a commercial motor vehicle is defined as a self-propelled vehicle used on the highways in commerce principally to transport passengers or cargo, if the vehicle:
(a) has a gross vehicle weight rating of at least 10,001 pounds or more; 
(b) is designed to transport 11 or more passengers (including the driver); or 
(c) is used in transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards.

Interstate Carriers Who Also Hold PUC Operating Authority

Interstate carriers that also hold operating authority from the Public Utility Commission and pay the UCR fee must still pay a PUC assessment on revenue earned from non-UCR operations.  UCR operations are limited to: (1) group and party service in vehicles seating 16 or more passengers, including the driver; and (2) property service (does not include household goods).  Note that payment of the Commission assessment (based on non-UCR related operations) will not relieve a carrier from registering under the UCR Act and paying the appropriate UCR fee for that portion of its operations subject to the UCR program.  Carriers must verify their interstate operations with the Commission on the annual Assessment Report. Carriers will be asked to provide their US DOT number, and if appropriate their MC number.  Interstate carriers that also hold operating authority from the PUC are not required to display the PUC number on their vehicles, nor carry any credentials demonstrating PUC authority.

US DOT Number Companies that operate commercial vehicles transporting passengers or hauling cargo in interstate commerce must be registered with the FMCSA and must have a USDOT number. Also, commercial intrastate hazardous materials carriers who haul quantities requiring a safety permit must register for a USDOT number. The USDOT number serves as a unique identifier when collecting and monitoring a company's safety information acquired during audits, compliance reviews, crash investigations, and inspections. Further information about obtaining a US DOT number can be found at www.fmcsa.dot.gov.

 

MC Number

FMCSA operating authority is also referred to as an "MC," "FF," or "MX" number, depending on the type of authority that is granted. Unlike the USDOT number application process, a company may need to obtain multiple operating authorities to support its planned business operations. Operating authority dictates the type of operation a company may engage, the cargo it may carry, and the geographical area in which it may legally operate. Carriers not required to have operating authority include Private carriers, "for-hire" carriers that exclusively haul exempt commodities (cargo that is not federally regulated), or carriers that operate exclusively within a federally designated "commercial zone" that is exempt from interstate authority rules. Further information about obtaining interstate operating authority (MC number) can be found at www.fmcsa.dot.gov.
 

Wholly Intrastate Carriers

Carriers who hold operating authority from the Public Utility Commission whose operations are wholly intrastate, are not subject to the UCR Act and will continue to pay the annual assessment to the Commission.