Do 3PL’s need to file the UCR & MCS-150 filings?

What does it mean to have a UCR filing?   UCR stands for Unified Carrier Registration.   Does a brokerage still have to file for a “carrier” registration?   The answer is yes.

The UCR is Federally-mandated.   It is the registration program for each state for interstate motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders and leasing companies.   This is required in order to operate in interstate business in the United States. Some states do not participate in the program. However, if you still live in one of those states, you are required to file through a state that will be assigned to you.

In other words, they base charges on the amount of commercial motor vehicles that run interstate business.  If you are a brokerage without any trucks, the registration should be around $68 (2019 rate).   You can file this yourself at or there are many businesses that can help you file for an additional service fee.

It is mandatory that you file the UCR registration and pay the annual fee. There will be fines applied if you do not.

There is also registration of form MSC-150 that needs filed biennially.   This is through the URS – Unified Registration System.    It is with the FMCSA to make sure they have current information on each transportation entity.    Once the registration is complete it will update your US DOT number.  Even if none of your information has changed, you still have to update your information with the FMCSA.  You can do this free online at   If you fail to register they can revoke your DOT number and fine you up to $1,000 a day.

Above all, make sure your authority and DOT# stays active and make sure these filings get done and reported to the FMCSA.  Similarly, they are simple to do and aren’t a lot of money depending on your equipment but could put a business in hot water if they are not done.   It’s a matter of paying attention to the details.


This is #8 in our Series on Starting a Transporation Brokerage Business.  Leave a comment or question below.

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