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Code of Virginia
Title 46.2. Motor Vehicles
Chapter 21. Regulation of Property Carriers
6/17/2021

Chapter 21. Regulation of Property Carriers.

Article 1. Motor Carriers of Property -- Generally.

§ 46.2-2100. Definitions.

Whenever used in this chapter, unless expressly stated otherwise:

"Authorized insurer" means, in the case of an interstate motor carrier whose operations may or may not include intrastate activity, an insurer authorized to transact business in any one state, or, in the case of a solely intrastate motor carrier, an insurer authorized to transact business in the Commonwealth.

"Certificate of fitness" means a certificate issued by the Department to certain "household goods carriers" under this chapter.

"Constructive weight" means a measurement of seven pounds per cubic foot of properly loaded van space.

"Department" means the Department of Motor Vehicles.

"Financial responsibility" means the ability to respond in damages for liability thereafter incurred arising out of the ownership, maintenance, use, or operation of a motor vehicle, in the amounts provided for in this chapter.

"Gross weight" means the weight of a truck after a shipment has been loaded.

"Highway" means every public highway or place of whatever nature open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicle travel in this Commonwealth, excluding the streets and alleys in towns and cities.

"Household goods" means personal effects and property used or to be used in a dwelling, when transported or arranged to be transported (i) between residences or (ii) between a residence and a storage facility with the intent to later transport to a residence. Transportation of such goods must be arranged and paid for by, or on behalf of, the householder.

"Household goods carrier" means a carrier who undertakes, whether directly or by a lease or other arrangement, to transport "household goods," as herein defined, by motor vehicle for compensation, on any highway in this Commonwealth, between two or more points in this Commonwealth, whether over regular or irregular routes.

"Interstate" means the transportation of property between states.

"Intrastate" means the transportation of property solely within a state.

"Motor carrier" means any person who undertakes whether directly or by a lease, to transport property, including household goods, as defined by this chapter, for compensation over the highways of the Commonwealth.

"Motor vehicle" means any vehicle, machine, tractor, trailer, or semitrailer propelled or drawn by mechanical power and used upon the highways in the transportation of property, but does not include any vehicle, locomotive or car operated exclusively on a rail or rails.

"Net weight" means the tare weight subtracted from the gross weight.

"Permit" means a permit issued by the Department authorizing the transportation of property, excluding household goods transported for a distance greater than 30 road miles.

"Person" means any individual, firm, copartnership, corporation, company, association or joint-stock association, and includes any trustee, receiver, assignee, or personal representative thereof.

"Property carrier" means any person, not herein exempted, who undertakes either directly or by a lease, to transport property for compensation.

"Services" and "transportation" includes the services of, and all transportation by, all vehicles operated by, for, or in the interest of any motor carrier, irrespective of ownership or contract, express or implied, together with all facilities and property operated or controlled by any such carrier or carriers and used in the transportation of property or in the performance of any service in connection therewith.

"Tare weight" means the weight of a truck before being loaded at a shipper's residence or place of business, including the pads, dollies, hand-trucks, ramps and other equipment normally used in the transportation of household goods shipments.

Code 1950, § 56-338.1; 1995, cc. 744, 803; 1997, c. 283; 2001, c. 596; 2003, c. 832; 2006, cc. 874, 891; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2101. Exemptions from chapter.

The following are exempt from this chapter:

1. Motor vehicles owned and operated by the United States, District of Columbia, any state, municipality, or any other political subdivision of the Commonwealth.

2. Transportation of property between any point in this Commonwealth and any point outside this Commonwealth or between any points wholly within the limits of any city or town in the Commonwealth. This exemption shall not apply to the requirement to declare for-hire operation pursuant to § 46.2-2121.1 or the insurance requirement imposed on motor carriers pursuant to § 46.2-2143.1.

3. Motor vehicles controlled and operated by a bona fide cooperative association as defined in the Federal Marketing Act, approved June 15, 1929, as amended, or organized or existing under Article 2 (§ 13.1-312 et seq.) of Chapter 3 of Title 13.1, while used exclusively in the conduct of the business of such association. This exemption shall not apply to the requirement to declare for-hire operation pursuant to § 46.2-2121.1.

4. Motor vehicles while used exclusively in (i) carrying newspapers, water, livestock, poultry, poultry products, buttermilk, fresh milk and cream, meats, butter and cheese produced on a farm, fish (including shellfish), slate, horticultural or agricultural commodities (not including manufactured products thereof), and forest products, including lumber and staves (but not including manufactured products thereof), (ii) transporting farm supplies to a farm or farms, (iii) hauling for the Department of Transportation, (iv) carrying fertilizer to any warehouse or warehouses for subsequent distribution to a local area farm or farms, or (v) collecting and disposing of trash, garbage and other refuse. This exemption shall not apply to the requirement to declare for-hire operation pursuant to § 46.2-2121.1.

5. Motor vehicles used for transporting property by an air carrier or carrier affiliated with a direct air carrier whether or not such property has had or will have a prior or subsequent air movement. This exemption shall not apply to the requirement to declare for-hire operation pursuant to § 46.2-2121.1.

6. Motor carriers exclusively operating passenger cars, motorcycles, autocycles, mopeds, and vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or less. This exemption shall not apply to the insurance requirements imposed on motor carriers pursuant to § 46.2-2143.1 or 46.2-2143.2.

7. Personal delivery devices as defined in § 46.2-100.

Code 1950, § 56-338.2; 1954, c. 344; 1956, c. 697; 1973, c. 305; 1995, cc. 744, 803; 2001, c. 596; 2003, c. 832; 2012, c. 638; 2017, cc. 251, 788, 790, 815; 2020, c. 1269.

§ 46.2-2102. Compliance with chapter required.

No motor carrier shall operate any motor vehicle for the transportation of property for compensation on any highway in this Commonwealth on an intrastate basis except in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

Code 1950, § 56-338.3; 1995, cc. 744, 803; 2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2103. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2001, c. 596, cl. 2, effective July 1, 2002.

§ 46.2-2108.1. Disposition of funds collected.

Except as otherwise provided, all fees collected by the Commissioner pursuant to this chapter shall be paid into the state treasury and set aside as a special fund to be used to meet the expenses of the Department.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2108.2. Necessity of a permit or certificate.

It shall be unlawful for any person to operate, offer, advertise, provide, procure, furnish, or arrange to transport property for compensation on an intrastate basis as a motor carrier without first obtaining from the Department a permit or certificate of fitness as required by this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2108.3. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2017, cc. 790 and 815, cl. 2, effective January 1, 2018.

§ 46.2-2108.4. Application; notice requirements.

A. Applications for a permit or certificate of fitness or renewal of a permit or certificate of fitness under this chapter shall be made to the Department and contain such information as the Department shall require. Such information shall include, in the application or otherwise, the matters set forth in §§ 46.2-2133 and 46.2-2134 as grounds for denying permits and certificates.

B. The applicant for a certificate of fitness issued under this chapter shall cause a notice of such application, on the form and in the manner prescribed by the Department, to be served on every affected person who has requested notification.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2013, cc. 165, 582; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2108.5. Registered for fuels tax; business, professional, and occupational license taxes.

Permit and certificate of fitness holders shall be licensed and registered in accordance with the road tax requirements of Chapter 27 (§ 58.1-2700 et seq.) of Title 58.1 and licensed for payment of local business, professional, and occupational license taxes of Chapter 37 (§ 58.1-3700 et seq.) of Title 58.1 as required.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2108.6. Considerations for determination of issuance of permit, or certificate.

In determining whether a permit or certificate of fitness required by this chapter shall be issued, the Department may, among other things, consider compliance with financial responsibility, bonding, and other requirements of this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2109. Action on applications; hearings on denials and protests.

A. The Department may act upon any application required under this chapter without a hearing, unless such application is protested by any party based upon fitness allegations. Parties may protest an application by submitting written grounds to the Department setting forth (i) a precise statement of the party's objections to the application being granted; (ii) a full and clear statement of the facts that the person is prepared to provide by competent evidence; (iii) the case number assigned to the application; and (iv) a certification that a copy of the protest was sent to the applicant. The Department shall have full discretion as to whether a hearing is warranted based on the merits of any protest filed.

B. Any applicant denied without a hearing an original certificate of fitness under subsection A shall be given a hearing at a time and place determined by the Commissioner or his designee upon the applicant's written request for such hearing made within thirty days of denial.

Code 1950, § 56-338.11; 1995, cc. 744, 803; 2001, c. 596; 2002, c. 870; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2110. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2001, c. 596, cl. 2, effective July 1, 2002.

§ 46.2-2114.1. Expired.

Expired.

§ 46.2-2115. Determination for issuance of permit or certificate.

If the Department finds the applicant has met all requirements of this chapter, it shall issue a permit or certificate of fitness to the applicant, subject to such terms, limitations and restrictions as the Department may deem proper.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2116. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2012, cc. 22 and 111, cl. 2.

§ 46.2-2117. Temporary emergency operation.

In an emergency, the Department or its agents may, by letter, telegram, or other means, authorize a vehicle to be operated in the Commonwealth without a proper registration card or identification marker for not more than ten days.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2118. Issuance, expiration, and renewal of permit and certificate.

All permits and certificates of fitness issued under this chapter shall be issued for a period of 12 consecutive months except, at the discretion of the Department, the periods may be adjusted as necessary. Such permits and certificates shall expire if not renewed annually. Such expiration shall be effective 30 days after the Department has provided the permittee or certificate holder notice of nonrenewal. If the permit or certificate is renewed within 30 days after notice of nonrenewal, then the permit or certificate shall not expire.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2119. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2012, cc. 22 and 111, cl. 2.

§ 46.2-2120. Filing and application fees.

Every applicant for an original certificate of fitness issued under this chapter shall, upon the filing of an application, deposit with the Department, as a filing fee, a sum in the amount of $50. The Department shall collect a fee of $3 for the issuance of a duplicate certificate of fitness.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2121. Vehicle fees.

Every person who operates a property-carrying vehicle for compensation over the highways of the Commonwealth shall be required to pay an annual fee of $10 for each such vehicle so operated, unless (i) such operation is exempted from this chapter; (ii) the property-carrying vehicle is a passenger car, motorcycle, autocycle, moped, or vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or less; (iii) a vehicle identification marker fee has been paid to the Department as to such vehicle for the current year under the provisions of Chapter 27 (§ 58.1-2700 et seq.) of Title 58.1; or (iv) a fee has been paid for the vehicle through the unified carrier registration system established pursuant to 49 U.S.C. § 14504a and the regulations promulgated thereunder for carriers registered pursuant to those provisions. No more than one vehicle fee shall be charged or paid as to any vehicle in any one year under Chapter 27 (§ 58.1-2700 et seq.) of Title 58.1 and this chapter, including payments made pursuant to the unified carrier registration system.

2001, c. 596; 2003, c. 322; 2006, c. 208; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2121.1. Declaration of for-hire operation; presumption of nonbusiness use.

Before any motor vehicle is used by a motor carrier to transport property for compensation over the highways of the Commonwealth, the owner of the vehicle shall declare to the Department that the operation of such vehicle is for hire.

Any passenger car, motorcycle, autocycle, or pickup or panel truck, as defined in § 46.2-100, subject to the declaration required by this section and determined pursuant to § 58.1-3523 to be (i) privately owned, (ii) leased pursuant to a contract requiring the lessee to pay the tangible personal property tax on such vehicle, or (iii) held in a private trust for nonbusiness purposes and registered with the Department as a personal vehicle shall be presumed to be used for nonbusiness purposes in determining whether such vehicle is a qualifying vehicle under § 58.1-3523 absent clear and convincing evidence to the contrary. Any declaration given pursuant to this section shall not create any presumption of business or commercial use of the vehicle or of business activity on the part of the vehicle owner, lessee, or operator for purposes of any state or local requirement.

2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2122. Bond and letter of credit requirements of applicants for certificate.

A. Every applicant for an original certificate of fitness under this chapter shall obtain and file with the Department, along with the application, a surety bond or an irrevocable letter of credit, in addition to any other bond or letter of credit required by law, in the amount of $50,000, which shall remain in effect for the first five years of licensure. The bond or letter of credit shall be in a form and content acceptable to the Department. The bond or letter of credit shall be conditioned on a statement by the applicant that the applicant will not practice fraud, make any fraudulent representation, or violate any provision of this chapter in the conduct of the applicant's business. The Department may, without holding a hearing, suspend the certificate of fitness during the period that the certificate holder does not have a sufficient bond or letter of credit on file.

B. If a person suffers any of the following: (i) loss or damage in connection with the transportation service by reason of fraud practiced on him or fraudulent representation made to him by a certificate holder or his agent or employee acting within the scope of employment; (ii) loss or damage by reason of a violation by a certificate holder or his agent or employee of any provision of this chapter in connection with the transportation service; or (iii) loss or damage resulting from a breach of a contract entered into on or after July 1, 2002, that person shall have a claim against the certificate holder's bond or letter of credit, and may recover from such bond or letter of credit the amount awarded to such person by final judgment of a court of competent jurisdiction against the certificate holder as a result of such loss or damage up to, but not exceeding, the amount of the bond or letter of credit.

C. The certificate holder's surety shall notify the Department when a claim is made against a certificate holder's bond, when a claim is paid and/or when the bond is canceled. Such notification shall include the amount of a claim and the circumstances surrounding the claim. Notification of cancellation shall include the effective date and reason for cancellation.

D. The surety on any bond filed by a certificate holder shall be released and discharged from all liability accruing on such bond after the expiration of 60 days from the date on which the surety files with the Department a written request to be released and discharged. Such request shall not operate to relieve, release, or discharge the surety from any liability already accrued or that shall accrue before the expiration of the 60-day period.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2013, cc. 165, 582; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2123. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2012, cc. 22 and 111, cl. 2.

§ 46.2-2124. Notice of discontinuance of service.

Every motor carrier who ceases operation or abandons his rights under a permit or certificate of fitness issued shall notify the Department within 30 days of such cessation or abandonment.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2125. Reports, records, etc.

A. The Department is hereby authorized to require annual, periodical, or special reports from motor carriers, except such as are exempted from the operation of the provisions of this chapter; to prescribe the manner and form in which such reports shall be made; and to require from such carriers specific answers to all questions upon which the Department may deem information to be necessary. Such reports shall be under oath whenever the Department so requires. The Department may also require any motor carrier to file with it a true copy of each or any contract, agreement, or arrangement between such carrier and any other carrier or person in relation to the provisions of this chapter.

B. The Department may prescribe (i) the forms of any and all accounts, records, and memoranda to be kept by motor carriers and (ii) the length of time such accounts, records, and memoranda shall be preserved, as well as of the receipts and expenditures of money. The Department or its employees shall at all times have access to all lands, buildings, or equipment of motor carriers used in connection with their operations and also all accounts, records, and memoranda, including all documents, papers, and correspondence now or hereafter existing, and kept, or required to be kept, by motor carriers. The Department and its employees shall have authority to inspect and examine any and all such lands, buildings, equipment, accounts, records, and memoranda, including all documents, papers, and correspondence now or hereafter existing and kept or required to be kept by such carriers. These provisions shall apply to receivers of carriers and to operating trustees and, to the extent deemed necessary by the Department, to persons having control, direct or indirect, over or affiliated with any motor carrier.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2126. Certificate or permit holder not relieved of liability for negligence.

Nothing in this chapter shall relieve any holder of a certificate or permit by and under the authority of the Department from any liability resulting from his negligence, whether or not he has complied with the requirements of this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2127. Freight bill violation.

Any motor carrier that consistently submits a freight bill to a shipper for services rendered, which bill is more than ten percent above the written estimate of charges for such services, shall be subject to penalties and/or revocation or suspension of certificate as provided in this chapter.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2128. Vehicle seizure; penalty.

A. Any police officer of the Commonwealth authorized to serve process may hold a motor vehicle owned by a person against whom an order or penalty has been entered, but only for such time as is reasonably necessary to promptly petition for a writ of fieri facias. The Commonwealth shall not be required to post bond in order to hold and levy upon any vehicle held pursuant to this section.

B. Upon notification of the judgment or penalty entered against the owner of the vehicle and notice to such person of the failure to satisfy the judgment or penalty, any investigator, special agent, or officer of the Commonwealth shall thereafter deny the offending person the right to operate the motor vehicle on the highways of the Commonwealth.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2129. Unlawful use of registration and identification markers.

It shall be unlawful for any person to operate or cause to be operated on any highway in the Commonwealth any motor vehicle that (i) does not carry the proper registration and identification that this title requires, (ii) does not display an identification marker issued for such vehicle by the Department in such manner as is prescribed by the Department, or (iii) bears registration or identification markers of persons whose permit or certificate issued by the Department has been revoked, suspended, or renewal thereof denied in accordance with this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2130. Registration violations; penalties.

A. The following violations of laws shall be punished as follows:

1. Any person who does not declare a motor vehicle to be operated for hire when required by § 46.2-2121.1 or otherwise obtain a proper registration card or other evidence of registration as required by Chapter 6 (§ 46.2-600 et seq.) is guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.

2. Any person who operates or causes to be operated on any highway in the Commonwealth any motor vehicle that does not carry the proper registration and identification that this title requires or any motor vehicle that does not display (i) an identification marker issued for such vehicle by the Department in such manner as is prescribed by the Department or (ii) other identifying information that this title requires it to display is guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.

3. Any person who knowingly displays or uses on any vehicle operated by him any identification marker or other identification that has not been issued to the owner or operator thereof for such vehicle and any person who knowingly assists him to do so is guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.

4. Any person who operates or causes to be operated on any highway in the Commonwealth any motor vehicle requiring registration from the Department under this title or Title 58.1 after such registration cards or identification markers have been revoked, canceled or suspended is guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.

B. The officer charging the violation under this section shall serve a citation on the operator of the vehicle in violation. Such citation shall be directed to the owner, operator or other person responsible for the violation as determined by the officer. Service of the citation on the vehicle operator shall constitute service of process upon the owner, operator, or other person charged with the violation under this article, and shall have the same legal force as if served within the Commonwealth personally upon the owner, operator, or other person charged with the violation, whether such owner, operator, or other person charged is a resident or nonresident.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2131. Violation; criminal penalties.

A. Any person knowingly and willfully violating any provision of this chapter, or any rule or regulation thereunder, or any term or condition of any certificate or permit for which a penalty is not otherwise herein provided, shall, upon conviction thereof, be fined not more than $2,500 for the first offense and not more than $5,000 for any subsequent offense. Each day of such violation shall constitute a separate offense.

B. Any person, whether carrier, shipper, or consignee, or any officer, employee, agent, or representative thereof, who shall knowingly and willfully by any such means or otherwise fraudulently seek to evade or defeat regulation as in this chapter provided for motor carriers, is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not more than $500 for the first offense and not more than $2,000 for any subsequent offense.

C. Any motor carrier or any officer, agent, employee, or representative thereof who willfully fails or refuses to make a report to the Department as required by this chapter or to keep accounts, records, and memoranda in the form and manner approved or prescribed by the Department, or knowingly and willfully falsifies, destroys, mutilates, or alters any such report, account, record or memorandum, or knowingly and willfully files any false report, account, record or memorandum, is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be subject for each offense to a fine of not less than $100 and not more than $5,000.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2132. Violations; civil penalties.

The Department may impose a civil penalty not exceeding $1,000 if any person has:

1. Made any misrepresentation of a material fact to obtain proper operating credentials as required by this chapter or other requirements in this title regulating the operation of motor vehicles;

2. Failed to make any report required in this chapter;

3. Failed to pay any fee or tax properly assessed against him; or

4. Failed to comply with any provision of this chapter or lawful order, rule or regulation of the Department or any term or condition of any certificate or permit.

Any such penalty shall be imposed by order; however, no order issued pursuant to this section shall become effective until the Department has offered the person an opportunity for an administrative hearing to show cause why the order should not be enforced. Instead of or in addition to imposing such penalty, the Department may suspend, revoke, or cancel any permit, certificate of fitness, or registration card or identification marker issued pursuant to this title. If, in any such case, it appears that the defendant owes any fee or tax to the Commonwealth, the Department shall enter order therefor.

For the purposes of this section, each separate violation shall be subject to the civil penalty.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2013, cc. 165, 582; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2133. Grounds for denying, suspending, or revoking certificates.

A certificate of fitness issued under this chapter may be denied, suspended, or revoked on any one or more of the following grounds, where applicable:

1. Material misstatement or omission in application for certificate of fitness or vehicle registration;

2. Failure to comply subsequent to receipt of a written warning from the Department or any willful failure to comply with a lawful order, any provision of this chapter or any regulation promulgated by the Department under this chapter, or any term or condition of any certificate of fitness;

3. Use of deceptive business acts or practices;

4. Knowingly advertising by any means any assertion, representation, or statement of fact that is untrue, misleading, or deceptive relating to the conduct of the business for which a certificate of fitness or vehicle registration is held or sought;

5. Having been found, through a judicial or administrative hearing, to have committed fraudulent or deceptive acts in connection with the business for which a certificate of fitness is held or sought or any consumer-related fraud;

6. Having been convicted of any criminal act involving the business for which a certificate of fitness is held or sought;

7. Improper leasing, renting, lending, or otherwise allowing the improper use of a certificate of fitness, identification marker issued by the Department, or vehicle registration;

8. Having been convicted of a felony;

9. Having been convicted of any misdemeanor involving lying, cheating, stealing, or moral turpitude;

10. Failure to submit to the Department any tax, fees, dues, fines, or penalties owed to the Department;

11. Failure to furnish the Department information, documentation, or records required or requested pursuant to statute or regulation;

12. Knowingly and willfully filing any false report, account, record, or memorandum;

13. Failure to meet or maintain application certifications or requirements of character, fitness, and financial responsibility pursuant to this chapter;

14. Willfully altering or changing the appearance or wording of any license, certificate, identification marker issued by the Department, license plate, or vehicle registration;

15. Failure to provide services in accordance with certificate of fitness terms, limitations, conditions, or requirements;

16. Failure to maintain and keep on file with the Department motor carrier liability insurance or cargo insurance, issued by a company licensed to do business in the Commonwealth, or a bond, certificate of insurance, certificate of self-insurance, or unconditional letter of credit in accordance with this chapter, with respect to each motor vehicle operated in the Commonwealth;

17. Failure to comply with the Workers' Compensation Act of Title 65.2;

18. Failure to properly register a motor vehicle under this title;

19. Failure to comply with any federal motor carrier statute, rule, or regulation; or

20. Inactivity of a motor carrier as may be evidenced by the absence of a motor vehicle registered to operate under such certificate for a period of greater than three months.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2013, cc. 165, 582; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2134. Grounds for denying, suspending, or revoking permits.

A permit issued under this chapter may be denied, suspended, or revoked on any one or more of the following grounds:

1. Failure to submit to the Department any tax, fees, fines, or penalties owed to the Department.

2. Failure to maintain and keep on file with the Department motor carrier liability insurance or cargo insurance, issued by a company licensed to do business in the Commonwealth, or a bond, certificate of insurance, certificate of self-insurance, or unconditional letter of credit in accordance with this chapter, with respect to each motor vehicle operated in the Commonwealth.

3. Inactivity of a motor carrier as may be evidenced by the absence of a motor vehicle registered to operate under such permit for a period of greater than three months.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2135. Altering or amending permits or certificates.

The Department may alter or amend a permit or certificate of fitness at the request of a permittee or certificate holder or upon a finding by the Department that a permittee or certificate holder failed to observe any of the provisions within this chapter, or any of the rules or regulations of the Department, or any term, condition, or limitation of such permit or certificate.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2136. Suspension, revocation, and refusal to renew permit or certificate; notice and hearing.

A. Except as provided in subsection D, unless otherwise provided in this chapter, no permit or certificate of fitness issued under this chapter shall be suspended or revoked, or renewal thereof refused, unless the permittee or certificate holder has been furnished a written copy of the complaint against him and the grounds upon which the action is taken and has been offered an opportunity for an administrative hearing to show cause why such action should not be taken.

B. The order suspending, revoking, or denying renewal of a permit or certificate of fitness shall not become effective until the permittee or certificate holder has, after notice of the opportunity for a hearing, had 30 days to make a written request for such a hearing. If no hearing has been requested within such 30-day period, the order shall become effective and no hearing shall thereafter be held. A timely request for a hearing shall automatically stay operation of the order until after the hearing.

C. Notice of an order suspending, revoking, or denying renewal of a permit or certificate of fitness and an opportunity for a hearing shall be mailed to the permittee or certificate holder by registered or certified mail at the address as shown on the permit or certificate or other record of information in possession of the Department and shall be considered served when mailed.

D. If the Department makes a finding, after conducting a preliminary investigation, that the conduct of a permittee or certificate holder (i) is in violation of this chapter or regulations adopted pursuant to this chapter and (ii) such violation constitutes a danger to public safety, the Department may issue an order suspending the permit or certificate. Notice of the suspension shall be in writing and mailed in accordance with subsection C. Upon receipt of a request for a hearing appealing the suspension, the permittee or certificate holder shall be afforded the opportunity for a hearing within 30 days. The suspension shall remain in effect pending the outcome of the hearing.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2137. Basis for reinstatement of suspended permits or certificates; reinstatement fees.

A. The Department shall reinstate any permit or certificate suspended pursuant to this chapter provided the grounds upon which the suspension action was taken have been satisfied and the appropriate reinstatement fee and other applicable fees have been paid to the Department.

B. The reinstatement fee for suspensions issued pursuant to this chapter shall be $50. In the event multiple credentials have been suspended under this chapter for the same violation only one reinstatement fee shall be applicable.

C. In addition to a reinstatement fee, a fee of $500 shall be paid for failure of a motor carrier to keep in force at all times insurance, a bond or bonds, in an amount required by this chapter. Any motor carrier who applies for a new permit or certificate because his prior permit or certificate was revoked for failure to keep in force at all times insurance, a bond or bonds, in an amount required by this chapter, shall also be subject to a fee of $500.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2138. Basis for reissuance after revocation of permits or certificates; fees.

The Department shall not accept an application for a permit or certificate from an applicant where such credentials have been revoked pursuant to this chapter until the period of revocation imposed by the Department has passed. The Department shall process such applications under the same provisions, procedures and requirements as an original application for such permit or certificate. The Department shall issue such permit or certificate, provided that the applicant has met all the appropriate qualifications and requirements, has satisfied the grounds upon which the revocation action was taken, and has paid the appropriate application or filing fees to the Department.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2139. Surrender of license plate and registration card; removal by law enforcement; operation of vehicle denied.

A. It shall be unlawful for a permittee or certificate holder whose permit or certificate has expired or been revoked or suspended or whose renewal thereof has been denied pursuant to this chapter to fail or refuse to surrender, on demand, to the Department license plates and registration cards issued under this title.

B. It shall be unlawful for a vehicle owner who is not the holder of a valid permit or certificate or whose vehicle is not validly leased to a motor carrier holding an active permit or certificate to fail or refuse to surrender to the Department on demand license plates and registration cards issued under this title.

C. If any law-enforcement officer finds that a vehicle bearing Virginia license plates or temporary transport plates is in violation of subsection A or B, such law-enforcement officer may remove the license plate or plates and registration card. If a law-enforcement officer removes a license plate or registration card, he shall forward such license plate and registration card to the Department.

D. When informed that a motor carrier vehicle is being operated in violation of this section, the driver shall drive the vehicle to a nearby location off the public highways and not remove it or allow it to be moved until the motor carrier is in compliance with all provisions of this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2015, c. 258; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2140. Title to plates.

All registration cards and license plates issued by the Department shall remain the property of the Department.

2001, c. 596; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

Article 2. Insurance Requirements.

§ 46.2-2141. Application of article.

Unless otherwise stated, this article shall apply to all motor carriers as defined under this chapter.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2142. Bonds or insurance to be kept in force; amounts.

Each motor carrier shall keep in force at all times insurance, a bond or bonds, in an amount required by this article.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2143. Surety bonds, insurance, letter of credit or securities required prior to issuance of registration.

No certificate of fitness, permit, registration card, or license plate shall be issued by the Department to any motor carrier or for any vehicle operated by or on behalf of a motor carrier until the motor carrier certifies to the Department that the vehicle is covered by one or more of the following, in the amount or amounts set forth in § 46.2-2143.1:

1. An insurance policy or bond;

2. A certificate of insurance in lieu of the insurance policy or bond, certifying that such policy or bond covers the liability of such motor carrier in accordance with the provisions of this article, is issued by an authorized insurer, or in the case of bonds, is in an amount approved by the Department. The bonds may be issued by the Commonwealth of Virginia, the United States of America, or any municipality in the Commonwealth. Such bonds shall be deposited with the State Treasurer and the surety shall not be reduced except in accordance with an order of the Department;

3. An unconditional letter of credit, issued by a bank doing business in Virginia, for an amount approved by the Department. The letter of credit shall be in effect so long as the motor carrier operates motor vehicles in the Commonwealth; or

4. In the case of a lessor who acts as a registrant for purposes of consolidating lessees' vehicle registration applications, a statement that the registrant has, before leasing a vehicle, obtained from the lessee an insurance policy, bond, or certificate of insurance in lieu of the insurance policy or bond and can make available said proof of insurance coverage upon demand.

Vehicles belonging to carriers who have filed proof of financial responsibility in accordance with the unified carrier registration system authorized by 49 U.S.C. § 14504a are deemed to have fulfilled the requirements of this article for insurance purposes. The Department is further authorized to register any qualified carrier under the unified carrier registration system as well as to collect and disperse the fees for registration under that system.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 208; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2012, c. 638; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2143.1. Insurance requirement for motor carriers.

A. All motor carriers shall keep in force at all times insurance, a bond, or bonds in an amount required by this section. However, motor carriers exempt under subdivision 6 of § 46.2-2101 shall only be required to keep in force insurance, a bond, or bonds in the amount required by this section that provide primary coverage (i) when the motor carrier or person acting on behalf of the motor carrier is available to transport property for compensation and (ii) from the time the motor carrier or a person acting for or on behalf of the motor carrier accepts the request to transport property and the vehicle is en route to pick up the property until the time the property has been removed from the vehicle and delivered to its final destination.

B. The minimum public liability financial responsibility requirements for motor carriers operating in intrastate commerce shall be based on the gross vehicle weight rating of the vehicle as follows: for vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating in excess of 10,000 pounds, the minimum requirement is $750,000; for vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating in excess of 7,500 pounds but not in excess of 10,000 pounds, the minimum requirement is $300,000; for passenger cars, motorcycles, autocycles, and vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 7,500 pounds or less, the minimum requirement for clause (i) of subsection A is $25,000 per person, $50,000 per incident for death and bodily injury and $20,000 for property damage and for clause (ii) of subsection A is $100,000 per person and $300,000 per incident for death and bodily injury and at least $50,000 for property damage. The minimum insurance for motor carriers operating in interstate commerce shall equal the minimum required by federal law, rule, or regulation.

C. Notwithstanding subsection B, the minimum public financial responsibility requirements for household goods carriers required to obtain a certificate of fitness pursuant to this chapter shall be $750,000.

D. The minimum cargo insurance required for motor carriers operating in intrastate commerce shall be $50,000. Motor carriers not engaged in the transportation of household goods and those solely operating passenger cars, motorcycles, autocycles, and vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 7,500 pounds or less shall not be required to file any cargo insurance, bond, or bonds for cargo liability.

2012, c. 638; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2143.2. Special insurance provisions for certain carriers.

A. The provisions of this section shall apply only to motor carriers exempt under subdivision 6 of § 46.2-2101 and insurance policies maintained by such carriers pursuant to this article.

B. Insurance coverage for motor carriers shall be primary, and the requirements of § 46.2-2143.1 may be satisfied by any of the following:

1. Insurance maintained by the motor carrier;

2. Insurance maintained by another person on behalf of the motor carrier; or

3. Any combination of subdivisions 1 and 2.

C. A motor carrier may meet its obligation under subsection B of § 46.2-2143.1 through a policy obtained by a person other than the carrier under subdivision B 2 or 3 only if the motor carrier verifies that the policy is maintained by such other person.

D. Insurers providing coverage under subsection B of § 46.2-2143.1 shall have the exclusive duty to defend any liability claim, including any claim against a motor carrier or person acting for or on behalf of the motor carrier, arising from an accident occurring within the time period specified in subsection A of § 46.2-2143.1. Insurers of the personal automobile insurance policy of neither a person acting for or on behalf of the motor carrier nor the vehicle's owner shall have the duty to defend or indemnify the activities of a person acting for or on behalf of a motor carrier in connection with the motor carrier unless such policy expressly provides otherwise for the period of time to which subsection A of § 46.2-2143.1 is applicable or the policy contains an amendment or endorsement to provide that coverage.

E. Coverage under a motor carrier's insurance policy shall not be dependent on a personal automobile policy's first denying a claim, nor shall a personal automobile insurance policy be required to first deny a claim.

F. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require a personal automobile insurance policy to provide primary or excess coverage. The personal automobile insurance policy of neither a person acting for or on behalf of the motor carrier nor the vehicle's owner shall provide coverage for activities in connection with the motor carrier to such person acting for or on behalf of the motor carrier, the vehicle owner, or any third party unless such policy expressly provides otherwise for the period of time to which subsection A of § 46.2-2143.1 is applicable or the policy contains an amendment or endorsement to provide that coverage.

G. In every instance where motor carrier insurance maintained by a person other than the motor carrier to fulfill the insurance obligations of subsection B of § 46.2-2143.1 has lapsed or ceased to exist, the motor carrier shall provide the coverage required by that subsection beginning with the first dollar of a claim.

H. This section shall not limit the liability of a motor carrier arising out of an accident involving a person acting for or on behalf of the carrier in any action for damages against a motor carrier for an amount above the required insurance coverage.

I. Any person, or an attorney acting on his behalf, who suffers a loss in an automobile accident with a reasonable belief that the accident involves a vehicle operated by a person acting for or on behalf of a motor carrier and who provides the motor carrier with the date, approximate time, and location of the accident, the name of the vehicle operator, if available, and the accident report, if available, may request in writing from the motor carrier information relating to the insurance coverage and the company providing the coverage. The motor carrier shall respond electronically or in writing within 30 days. The motor carrier's response shall contain the following information: (i) whether, at the approximate time of the accident, the vehicle was being operated for or on behalf of the motor carrier; (ii) the name of the insurance carrier providing primary coverage; and (iii) the identity and last known address of the vehicle operator.

J. Any insurance required by subsection B of § 46.2-2143.1 may be placed with an insurer that has been admitted in Virginia or with an insurer providing surplus lines insurance as defined in § 38.2-4805.2.

K. Any insurance policy required by subsection B of § 46.2-2143.1 shall satisfy the financial responsibility requirement for a motor vehicle under § 46.2-706 during the period such vehicle is being operated for or on behalf of a motor carrier.

L. If a vehicle operated by a person acting for or on behalf of a motor carrier is insured under a personal automobile insurance policy that does not exclude coverage, then such policy shall provide primary coverage and an insurance policy maintained by the motor carrier under § 46.2-2143.1 shall provide excess coverage up to at least the limits required by § 46.2-2143.1.

M. In a claims coverage investigation, a motor carrier and its insurer shall cooperate with insurers involved in the claims coverage investigation to facilitate the exchange of information, including the date and time of any accident involving a vehicle operated for or on behalf of the motor carrier and the precise times that the vehicle was being operated for or on behalf of the motor carrier.

2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2144. Policies or surety bonds to be filed with the Department and securities with State Treasurer.

A. Each motor carrier shall keep on file with the Department proof of an insurance policy or bond in accordance with this article. Record of the policy or bond shall remain in the files of the Department six months after the certificate of fitness, registration card, license plate, or permit is canceled for any cause. If federal, state, or municipal bonds are deposited with the State Treasurer in lieu of an insurance policy, the bonds shall remain deposited until six months after the registration card, license plate, certificate, or permit is canceled for any cause unless otherwise ordered by the Department.

B. The Department may, without holding a hearing, suspend a permit or certificate of fitness if the permittee or certificate holder fails to comply with the requirements of this section.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2017, cc. 790, 815.

§ 46.2-2145. Condition or obligation of security.

The insurance, bond or other security provided for in § 46.2-2144 shall obligate the insurer or surety to pay any final judgment for (i) damages sustained by the shippers or consignees for injury to any passenger or passengers or for loss or damage to property entrusted to such motor carrier when a cargo policy is required and (ii) any and all injuries to persons and loss of or damage to property resulting from the negligent operation of any motor vehicle.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2146. Effect of unfair claims settlement practices on self-insured motor carriers.

The provisions of subdivisions 4, 6, 11 and 12 of subsection A of § 38.2-510 shall apply to each holder of a certificate of fitness or permit issued by and under the authority of the Department who, in lieu of filing an insurance policy, has deposited with the State Treasurer state, federal or municipal bonds or has filed an unconditional letter of credit issued by a bank. The failure of any such holder of a certificate or permit to comply with the provisions of § 38.2-510 shall be the cause for revocation or suspension of the certificate or permit.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889.

Article 3. Property Carriers.

§ 46.2-2147. Certain household goods carriers exempted from article.

Household goods carriers transporting solely household goods under a certificate of fitness issued pursuant to this chapter are exempt from the provisions of this article.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889.

§ 46.2-2148. Required permit.

No property carrier, unless otherwise exempted, shall transport property on any highway within the Commonwealth on an intrastate basis without first having obtained from the Department a permit authorizing such operation.

2001, c. 596.

Article 4. Household Goods Carriers.

§ 46.2-2149. Certain household goods carriers exempt from certain provisions of article.

Household goods carriers transporting household goods for a lesser distance than thirty-one road miles are exempt from this article except the provisions of § 46.2-2168.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2150. Required certificates of fitness.

No household goods carrier, unless otherwise exempted, shall engage in intrastate operations on any highway within the Commonwealth without first having obtained from the Department a certificate of fitness authorizing such operation.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889.

§ 46.2-2151. Considerations for determination of issuance of certificate.

In determining whether the certificate of fitness required by this article shall be granted, the Department may, among other things, consider the provisions of § 46.2-2108.6, the applicant's character and fitness, and the applicant's compliance with federal, state, and local taxes.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889.

§ 46.2-2152. Control by Department.

Every household goods carrier is hereby declared to be subject to control, supervision and regulation by the Department.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2153. Provisions of chapter controlling.

As to household goods carriers, the provisions of this chapter shall be controlling, and no laws in conflict herewith, or inconsistent herewith, shall have any application to such carriers.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2154. Discontinuance of service.

Notwithstanding anything contained in this chapter to the contrary, no household goods carrier shall abandon or discontinue either temporarily or permanently any service established under the provisions of this chapter without permission of the Department and on such terms as the Department may prescribe.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2155. Power and duty of Department.

The Department shall regulate and control all household goods carriers not herein exempted, doing business in the Commonwealth, in all matters relating to the performance of their duties as such carriers and their rates and charges therefor, which rates and charges shall be filed with and subject to approval by the Department by individual household goods carriers or by groups of such carriers, and correct abuses by such carriers. To that end the Department may prescribe reasonable rules, regulations, bills of lading, forms and reports for such carriers to administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter. The Department shall have the right at all times to require from such carriers special reports and statements, under oath, concerning their business. It shall make and enforce such requirements, rules, and regulations as may be necessary to prevent unjust or unreasonable discriminations by any such carrier. The Department may prescribe and enforce such reasonable requirements, rules and regulations in the matter of leasing of motor vehicles as are necessary to prevent evasion of the Department's regulatory powers.

The Department shall work in conjunction with the Department of State Police and local law-enforcement officials to promote uniform enforcement of the laws pertaining to motor carriers and the rules, regulations, forms, and reports prescribed under the provisions of this chapter.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889; 2012, cc. 22, 111.

§ 46.2-2156. Solicitation, booking, registration by other persons prohibited; storage-in-transit.

A. No person except a certificated household goods carrier, its parent, or its wholly owned subsidiary company, or other entity under complete ownership, or an employee of the above certificated carrier may solicit, book or register a shipment of household goods moving intrastate and only in the name of that certificated carrier.

B. No person or employee of a certificated or a noncertificated carrier may act as an employee, representative, or agent for another certificated carrier for purpose of soliciting, booking or registering an intrastate shipment except as provided in subsection A of this section. No person or employee of a certificated carrier who solicits, books or registers intrastate shipments may be employed by a noncertificated carrier.

C. A certificated household goods carrier may utilize the services of another certificated household goods carrier or a permitted property carrier that has complied with the minimum cargo insurance requirements of this chapter for storage and final delivery on storage-in-transit shipments at destination. A property carrier who does not hold a household goods certificate of fitness is prohibited from delivering a shipment for a greater distance than thirty road miles from the warehouse. The shipment must move on the bill of lading of the originating certificated household goods carrier with the delivering certificated household goods carrier or property carrier shown on the bill of lading. The legal liability of the shipment remains the responsibility of the originating certificated household goods carrier.

D. A household goods carrier may interchange or interline shipments with any other certificated household goods carrier provided both carriers hold proper authority to transport the shipment from origin to destination. The shipment must move on the bill of lading of the originating certificated household goods carrier with the delivering certificated household goods carrier shown on the bill of lading. The legal liability of the shipment remains the responsibility of the originating certificated household goods carrier.

2001, c. 596; 2011, cc. 881, 889.

§ 46.2-2157. Estimate of charges; penalties; information booklet for shippers.

A. Household goods carriers may, upon request of a shipper, cause to be given to such shipper an estimate of the charges for proposed services in the manner and form specified in this section:

1. The estimate may be made only after a visual inspection of the goods by the estimator or be based upon information furnished to the carrier by the shipper.

2. If a written estimate is furnished, across the top of each form there shall be imprinted, in bold type, the words "ESTIMATED COST OF SERVICES."

3. The name, address and phone number of the carrier providing the estimate must be shown in a legible manner on each estimate form.

4. Imprinted thereunder in regular type shall be words to the effect "IMPORTANT NOTICE: This estimate covers only the articles and services listed. It is not a guarantee that the actual charges will not exceed the amount of the estimate. However, carriers may bind the estimate and guarantee that charges may not exceed the bound estimate except for any accessorial tariff charges incurred at destination that are not known to the carrier until actual delivery of the shipment and a sight survey reveals that additional charges are necessary to effect delivery as published in the carrier's tariff. Household goods carriers are required by law to collect transportation and other incidental charges computed on the basis of rates shown in their lawfully published tariffs. Charges for additional services will be added to the transportation charges."

5. The original or a true legible copy of each estimate form prepared in accordance with this section may be delivered to the shipper and a copy thereof shall be maintained by the carrier as part of its record of shipment.

B. If the carrier provides a shipper with a written estimate, the carrier will give to the shipper an information booklet that has been approved by the Department and will obtain a receipt therefor from the shipper. Such receipt will become a part of the permanent file of the carrier.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

§ 46.2-2158. Bill of lading.

A. A bill of lading shall be issued.

B. A bill of lading shall contain the following information:

1. Name, address and telephone number of the household goods carrier.

2. Agreed pick-up period of time, the actual pick-up date and agreed delivery date or the agreed period of time within which delivery of the shipment is expected at destination.

3. True copies of the gross and tare weight tickets shall be attached to the bill of lading as soon as such weight tickets are obtained. If the shipper is present at the weighing, he shall then be given a copy of the gross and tare weight tickets upon request, otherwise, he shall be given a copy thereof at destination upon request.

4. The number of the vehicle onto which the shipment is loaded.

5. Amount of charges and method of payment of total tariff charges.

6. Total amount required to be paid in cash, postal money order, traveler's check, cashier's check, bank treasurer's check, bank wire transfer, or approved credit card to relinquish possession of a C.O.D. shipment.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

§ 46.2-2159. Freight bill or freight bill/bill of lading.

A. There shall be furnished by every household goods carrier at destination to the consignee of every C.O.D. shipment transported by him a freight bill, if a combination freight bill/bill of lading is not used, which bill shall contain the following information: point of origin, point of destination, date of shipment, description of article or commodity, weight of article or commodity rate, or rates applicable for the service rendered, statement of nature and amounts of charges for special services, where charges incurred, and method of payment of total tariff charges.

B. If a carrier uses a uniform household goods bill of lading and freight bill, subsection A of this section shall not apply.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2160. Bill of lading kept in vehicle; preserved in office.

With every motor vehicle transporting household goods there shall be carried with such property on the same vehicle a copy of the bill of lading of all such property, which shall indicate the consignor, consignee, origin, destination and weight of each shipment on the motor vehicle. The original or a copy of the bill of lading shall be preserved in the office of such carrier for a period of at least three years.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2161. Payment of tariff charges; payment of specific charges.

A. The carrier will not deliver or relinquish possession of any property transported by it until all tariff rates and charges thereon have been paid in cash, postal money order, traveler's check, cashier's check, bank treasurer's check, bank wire transfer, or approved credit card, except where other satisfactory arrangements have been made between the carrier and the consignor or consignee.

B. Carrier may require prepayment of charges for a specific service in full or in part on or before commencing performance of such services as requested by shipper.

C. Estimated charges may be bound or fixed so that the price estimated may not be exceeded with the exception that any accessorial tariff charges incurred at destination that are not known to the carrier until actual delivery of the shipment and a sight survey reveals that additional charges are necessary to effect delivery as published in the carrier's tariff.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

§ 46.2-2162. Carrier liability.

A. No delivery acknowledgement on any shipping document to be signed by the consignee at time of delivery shall contain any language that purports to release or discharge the carrier or its agents from liability, other than a statement that the property has been received in apparent good condition except as noted on the shipping documents.

B. Household goods carriers shall not assume any liability in excess of that for which they are legally liable under their lawful bills of lading and published tariffs.

C. Household goods carriers shall not advertise or represent to the public that "all loads are insured" or other similar wording, unless such carrier has filed tariffs with the Department, assuming complete liability, and has filed evidence of insurance with the Department providing protection covering all shipments to their full value without limitation and insuring against every peril to which any shipment may be exposed.

D. Shipper or his representative will acknowledge that the property has been received in apparent good condition except as noted on the shipping documents at time of delivery.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2163. Determination of weights by certified scales.

A. Each household goods carrier shall determine the tare weight of each vehicle used by having it weighed prior to, if practicable, the loading of each shipment under the following conditions:

1. By a certified weighmaster or on a certified scale, and

2. The vehicle shall contain all pads, chains, dollies, handtrucks and other equipment needed in the transportation of shipments to be loaded thereon.

B. After the vehicle has been loaded it shall be weighed under the following conditions:

1. At the certified scale nearest to the point of origin of the shipment, if practicable, and

2. The vehicle shall contain all pads, chains, dollies, handtrucks and other equipment needed in the transportation of shipments to be loaded thereon.

C. The net weight of the shipment shall be determined by deducting the tare weight from the gross weight and such weight shall be entered on the bill of lading.

D. Where no certified scale is available at the point of origin, the gross weight shall be obtained at the nearest certified scale either in the direction of the movement of the shipment or in the direction of the next pick-up or delivery in the case of partial loads.

In the transportation of partial loads, this section shall apply in all respects, except that the gross weight of a vehicle containing one or more partial loads shall be used as the tare weight of such vehicle as to partial loads subsequently loaded thereon.

E. The person paying the freight charges, or his representative upon request of either, shall be permitted without charge to accompany, in his own conveyance, the carrier to the weighing station and to observe the weighing of his shipment after loading.

The carrier shall use a certified scale that will permit the shipper to observe the weighing of his shipment without causing delay.

F. The provisions of this section shall not apply to bound or fixed estimates provided in accordance with the provisions of § 46.2-2161.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

§ 46.2-2164. Constructive weight.

If no certified scale is available at origin, at any point enroute, or at destination, a constructive weight based upon seven pounds per cubic foot of properly loaded van space may be used.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2165. Obtaining weight tickets.

The carrier shall obtain a weight ticket signed by the weighmaster or its driver for each weighing required under this section, with tare and gross weights evidenced by separate tickets, and the driver shall enter thereon the number of the bill of lading or shipper's name. No other alterations shall be made on any such ticket.

1. As soon as weight tickets are obtained, true copies thereof shall be attached to the bill of lading accompanying the shipment and retained in the carrier's file.

2. If a shipper requests, a true copy of each weight ticket pertaining to a shipment shall be given to the shipper at the weighing station if the shipper is present or upon delivery of the shipment if the shipper is not present at the weighing.

3. Any of the following shipments may be weighed on a certified scale or by a certified weighmaster prior to being loaded on the vehicle:

a. A part load for any one shipper not exceeding 1,000 pounds;

b. An automobile or other article weighing in excess of 500 pounds, which is mounted on wheels;

c. A shipment that the carrier containerizes for further transportation, in which case the net weight of the shipment shall be the gross weight of the container less the tare weight of the container. The gross weight of the container shall be as packed and prepared for shipment and the tare weight of the container shall include all of the pads, skins, blocking and bracing used, or to be used, to protect the contents of the container, but not including packing materials used in the preliminary packing of the shipment.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2166. Minimum weight shipments, notice.

No carrier shall accept an order for a shipment for transportation that appears to be subject to the minimum weight provisions of the carrier's tariff without first having advised the shipper of such minimum weight provisions.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2167. Reweighing of shipment.

The household goods carrier, upon request of the shipper or his representative made prior to the delivery, shall reweigh the shipment subject to the availability of scales at destination.

1. The household goods carrier shall inform the person requesting the reweigh, within a reasonable time prior to the gross reweighing, of the tariff charges therefor and the location of a certified scale in close proximity to the destination of the shipment that shall be used, and of the right of the shipper, or his representative, to observe the gross and tare reweighing.

2. The household goods carrier, without altering or deleting the initial weights, shall cause to be recorded on the bill of lading the gross, tare and net weights on reweigh, and shall give the shipper, or his representative, original or true copies of the weight tickets on reweigh in the same manner as prescribed in subdivision 2 of § 46.2-2165 for initial weighing.

3. The lower of the two net scale weights shall be used for determining the applicable charges.

4. The household goods carrier may publish in its tariff a reasonable charge for reweighing shipments, which charge shall be applicable when the reweigh develops a net scale weight in excess of the initial net scale weight or if the difference between the initial net scale weight and the reweight net scale weight is less than 100 pounds on a shipment weighing 5,000 pounds or less or two percent or less of the lower net scale weight on shipments in excess of 5,000 pounds.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2168. Claims.

A. Every household goods carrier that receives a written claim for loss of or damage to property transported by it shall:

1. Acknowledge receipt of such claim in writing to the claimant within thirty calendar days after its receipt by the carrier. The carrier shall, at the time such claim is received, cause the date of receipt to be recorded on the claim;

2. Pay, decline or make a firm compromise settlement offer in writing to the claimant within 120 days after receipt of the claim by the carrier or its agent.

B. If the claim cannot be processed and disposed of within 120 days after the receipt thereof, the carrier shall, at that time and the expiration of each succeeding thirty-day period while the claim remains pending, advise the claimant in writing of the status of the claim and the reasons for the delay in making final disposition thereof.

C. No household goods carrier shall provide by contract or otherwise a shorter period for the filing of loss and damage claims than thirty calendar days, and for the institution of suits than two years, such period for institution of suits to be computed from the day when notice in writing is given by the carrier to the claimant that the carrier has disallowed the claim or any part or parts thereof specified in the notice.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2169. Tariffs showing rates and charges, etc.

Every household goods carrier by motor vehicle shall file with the Department at least thirty days before the effective date and make available for public inspection, tariffs showing all the rates and charges for transportation, and all services in connection therewith. Such rates and charges shall be stated in terms of lawful money of the United States. The tariffs required by this section shall be published, filed, and posted in such form and manner, and shall contain such information as the Department may prescribe. The Department is authorized to reject any tariff filed with it that is not in consonance with this section and with such regulations. Any tariff so rejected by the Department shall be void, and its use shall be unlawful.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2170. Unlawful to charge other than published tariff.

No household goods carrier shall charge or demand or collect or receive a greater compensation for transportation or for any service in connection therewith than the rates and charges specified in the tariffs in effect at the time.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

§ 46.2-2171. Changes in tariffs.

No change shall be made in any rate or charge, or any rule, regulation, or practice affecting such rate or charge, or the value of the service thereunder, specified in any effective tariff of a household goods carrier, except after thirty days' notice of the proposed change. Such notice shall plainly state the change proposed to be made and the time when such change will take effect. The Department may, in its discretion and for good cause shown, allow such change upon notice less than that herein specified or modify the requirements of this section with respect to posting and filing of tariffs.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2172. Joint tariffs; power of attorney.

A. A household goods carrier may authorize an agent or may join with another carrier or carriers in the publication of a joint tariff, supplement or amendment, and, where such authority is given, shall file with the Department prior to publication power of attorney or notice of concurrence, which shall specifically set out the authority given.

B. Where a household goods carrier issues a power of attorney to an agent or a concurrence to another carrier for the publication of tariffs, such power of attorney or concurrence may not be revoked except upon sixty days' notice to the Department and the agent or carrier to which the power of attorney or concurrence was issued, except upon special permission of the Department.

2001, c. 596.

§ 46.2-2173. Tariff contents.

Tariff contents shall contain certain information:

1. Table of contents, arranged in alphabetical order, showing the number of the page and/or item number on which each subject may be found. If a tariff contains so small a volume of matter that its title page or interior arrangement plainly discloses its contents, the table of contents may be omitted.

2. A complete list of all carriers participating in the tariff, or reference to the governing publication which participation is shown.

3. A complete index of all commodities on which specific rates are named therein, together with reference to the page and/or items in which they are shown. No index need be shown in tariffs of less than five pages, or if all the rates to each destination are alphabetically arranged by commodities.

4. Explanations of all notes, abbreviations, symbols and reference marks used in tariff.

5. Rules that govern in clear and explicit terms, setting forth all privileges and services covered.

6. Any exceptions to the application of rates named, and non-application of rates named therein.

7. All line haul transportation rates shall be explicitly stated in dollars and cents.

8. Household goods carriers shall establish the charge to be made for each accessorial or terminal service rendered in connection with the shipment. The tariff shall separately state each service to be rendered and the charge therefor.

a. The charges for packing and unpacking shall be stated in amounts per container or per hundred weight.

b. An hourly labor charge may be established to cover miscellaneous labor services performed at the request of the shipper when a rate is not separately stated for the service requested.

9. Tariffs based on distances from point of origin to destination shall show the mileages or indicate a definite method by which such mileages shall be determined.

2001, c. 596; 2006, c. 609.

Article 5. Brokers.

§ 46.2-2174. Repealed.

Repealed by Acts 2017, cc. 790 and 815, cl. 2, effective January 1, 2018.