Farmers and FMCSA Biennial Updates

January 12, 2021


Katelyn Parsons

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires all entities under its jurisdiction to update their information every two years. You are required to provide this update every two years even if your company has not changed its information, has ceased interstate operations since the last update, or is no longer in business and you did not notify FMCSA.

Any business including farm plated vehicles engaged in commerce and their vehicles GVW are over 10,000lbs are required to have a Department of Transportation (DOT) number affixed to the sides of their trucks. Trucks must have these numbers before they can begin transporting materials, and any new company or carrier has to apply for one before it can send motor vehicles out on the road.

Every two years, or biennially, the information associated with this number must be updated. That’s done by filing an updated MCS-150 form. This form gives the government the most current information on your fleet and your company. It ensures that the data available is current and accurate.

Failure to complete a Biennial Update will result in deactivation of your USDOT number and may result in civil penalties of up to $1,000 per day, not to exceed $10,000. Additionally, your DOT number may be deactivated, which could cause disaster for your company, possibly shutting down operations.

Updating your information is FREE. The links below will help guide you in completing your biennial update.

What is an MCS-150 form?

The MCS-150 functions as an update to your DOT number. It’s essential that you fill out your MCS-150 forms correctly to ensure the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has the right information to tally safety scores based on its compliance, safety, accountability measurement system.

What is the Deadline to Update?

Filing schedule: Each motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider must file the appropriate form at the following times:

  • Before it begins operations; and
  • Every 24 months according to the following schedule:
USDOT number ending in: Must file by last day of:
1 January
2 February
3 March
4 April
5 May
6 June
7 July
8 August
9 September
0 October

If the next-to-last digit of its USDOT Number is odd, the motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider shall file its update in every odd-numbered calendar year. If the next-to-last digit of the USDOT Number is even, the motor carrier or intermodal equipment provider shall file its update in every even-numbered calendar year.

Based on your Department of Transportation (DOT) number, you’ll need to file your MCS form every 2 years.

  1. Look at your DOT Number
  2. Identify the second to last digit of your DOT number
    • If the second to last digit of your DOT number is odd– you’ll file your MCS form in the odd years. (i.e. 2019, 2021, 2023…)
    • If the second to last digit of your DOT number is even- you’ll file your MCS form in the even years. (i.e. 2020, 2022, 2024…)
  3. Identify the last digit of your DOT number: This number represents the month that your biennial DOT number update needs to be filed.

Why is Accuracy So Important?

If you do not turn in the right information, this can negatively impact your score. Every company or carrier should file biennially. You should also file a new updated MCS-150 if you:

  • Add new trucks to your fleet
  • Change the name of your business
  • Make any other major changes to your business

Where to File Your MCS-150 DOT Biennial Update

You’ll need to complete the registration renewal online




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