Motor carriers will again pay less for Unified Carrier Registration Plan and Agreement (UCR) fees in 2024 than the year before, but likely only for a short time.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced a proposed 9% decrease in UCR fees beginning next year. That reduction follows the 31% decrease carriers enjoyed in 2023. Due to changes in how FMCSA will estimate UCR fees in the future, it looks likely that the fees will increase in 2025. Comments on the FMCSA proposal are due by April 17, 2023.

The chart below shows the comparison between 2023 UCR fee levels and the proposed fees for 2024:

Proposed UCR Fees
Proposed change in UCR fees.

Congress created the Unified Carrier Registration Plan in 2005, replacing the Interstate Commerce Commission and state-level public utility/public service commission fee systems. UCR requires annual fees from interstate and international motor carriers, private carriers of property, brokers, freight forwarders, and leasing companies. The UCR board bases the fees on the number of trucks in a fleet, with the revenue going to support commercial vehicle law enforcement in participating states.

Forty-one states participate in the UCR system. Motor carriers based in the nine states which do not participate in UCR must still pay the fees if their trucks travel in interstate or international commerce. The nine non-participating jurisdictions are Arizona, Hawaii, Florida, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Vermont, Wyoming, and Washington D.C.

Recent years have seen an increase in law enforcement attention to UCR fee payment, particularly from motor carriers based in the non-participating states. UCR fees must be paid by Dec. 31 for the following year. See the UCR website for payment instructions.

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