The Effects of Truck Driver Overtime Regulations on Trucking Companies

The Effects of Truck Driver Overtime Regulations on Trucking Companies

If there’s one thing that can affect a trucking company and your fellow drivers, it’s overtime regulations. Many of us get a flat rate per mile and are ineligible for overtime. So, let’s take a closer look at truck driving laws and other trucking regulations that can affect truck driver overtime.

DOT Regulations for Truck Drivers

It’s no secret that the Department of Transportation doesn’t want us driving as long as possible without breaks. That’s not safe for us or anyone else on the road. Practically everyone should be familiar with the 11/14 rule. This regulation basically states that for every 14 hours you are on the job, you are permitted to drive for 11 of those hours.

Additionally, the DOT doesn’t want anyone driving for more than an eight-hour block without taking at least a 30-minute break. There must be 10 hours of rest between the recorded 14-hour blocks.

State Regulations for Truck Drivers

Although many of us go without overtime rates because of our home state regulations, some states favor drivers and require overtime pay. A prime example of this is Washington. Some favorable laws exist in New Jersey as well. Be sure to check your own state regulations; you could be eligible for overtime depending on the specifics of your trips.

Typically the state-level laws that mandate overtime compensation for truck drivers pertain to interstate runs. Washington is arguably one of the best states to live in for this reason. For example, drivers who live in Washington and are making a run to another state must be paid overtime for any appropriate period during the trip. In other words, the law doesn’t stop just because a Washington truck driver has crossed into another state.

Effects of Trucking Regulations

Now that we’ve briefly covered how many hours a truck driver can drive and the variations in state laws, let’s examine their effects.

Basically, current DOT regulations in many areas don’t help drivers make as much as they could, while these same regulations also keep many operations from running as efficiently as possible. Although regulations such as the 11/14 rule are meant to keep everyone safe, they also limit truck drivers’ earning potential.

If you live in a state that requires your employer to pay overtime for certain types of runs, make sure you know the laws so you can get what’s yours. However, if you live in an area where there are no beneficial regulations, your best option may be to look for local companies that offer overtime rates.

Remember to follow the 11/14 rule and familiarize yourself with your state’s overtime laws. You don’t want to miss out on overtime rates just because you weren’t informed!