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Drivers of leased trucks

The subjectivity of your drivers has an impact on your premium. To ensure that your coverage needs are being met by your policy, please contact SAIF or your insurance agent.

Supreme Court ruling on drivers of for-hire motor carriers

On March 24, 2022, the Oregon Supreme Court issued an opinion in "SAIF Corp. v. Ward, 369 Or 384 (2022)," affirming an earlier decision by the Oregon Court of Appeals. The opinion interprets the term “furnish” as used in ORS 656.027(15) regarding drivers of for-hire motor carriers.

ORS 656.027(15) applies to drivers who are employed by for-hire motor carriers and who lease their vehicles. The law provides:

“A person who has an ownership or leasehold interest in equipment and who furnishes, maintains and operates the equipment [is not a subject worker]. As used in this subsection ‘equipment’ means:

“(a) A motor vehicle used in the transportation of logs, poles or piling.

“(b) A motor vehicle used in the transportation of rocks, gravel, sand, dirt or asphalt concrete.

“(c) A motor vehicle used in the transportation of property by a for-hire motor carrier that is required under ORS 825.100 [ODOT] or 825.1041 [USDOT] to possess a certificate or permit or to be registered.”

The court found that to “furnish” a motor vehicle to a carrier, a worker must have the right to possess, use, and control the vehicle for purposes other than providing it to the carrier. The court found that a worker who does not have this right is not covered by the exception in ORS 656.027(15) and is therefore a subject worker, unless covered by another exception.

Questions?

Unsure how this might impact your business? Contact SAIF with policy and billing questions at 888.598.5880 or saifinfo@saif.com, or reach out to your insurance agent.