Posted on 06/24/22

There Are Differences Between A DOT Number And An MC Number

There Are Differences Between A DOT Number And An MC Number

You may have seen references to DOT or MC numbers if you are looking for shipping a car. What do these codes actually mean? What is the difference?

This blog will cover everything you need to know regarding MC and DOT numbers. It will also explain what they mean and which one you'll need for your shipment. Keep watching!

What is a number from the DOT?

Each commercial vehicle is assigned a Department of Transportation (DOT), number. It is a combination of numbers and letters.

It should be posted on the vehicle's doors or on a sign at the rear.

The FMCSA, or Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, releases the DOT number and approves it. This is the US's operating authority that regulates all vehicles.

A DOT number is required for all commercial vehicles that transport passengers or cargo interstate commerce. This applies to trucks, buses, and trailers as well as other equipment.

Every year, the official interstate operator authority must renew the DOT number. It must also be up-to-date at all times. The DOT number must be updated with any changes in ownership of commercial vehicles.

What does the DOT number serve?

You can use the DOT number for many purposes including:

  • Identify the vehicle
  • Multiple operating authorities recognize the recognition
  • Private carriers will take care of vehicle maintenance and condition.
  • Tracking the vehicle's history of ownership and accident records

Benefits of a DOT Number

There are many benefits to having a number on your DOT.

  • This ensures that commercial trucks are well-maintained and safe by trucking companies.
  • It decreases the accidents involving commercial vehicles.
  • This makes it easier to track down the owner of a commercial car involved in an accident or other incident.

How can you obtain a DOT number?

The FMCSA assigns a DOT number to all commercial vehicles within the United States.

To get a DOT Number, you will need to apply at your local FMCSA office. For a DOT number, there are strict guidelines and eligibility requirements. It is important to fully understand these requirements before you apply.

Contact your local FMCSA office if you are ready to apply to a new number or update your current one.

You can be sure that your commercial vehicle meets all requirements by having a valid DOT number.

What is an MC Number?

Motor Carrier is a shorthand for Motor Carrier. An MC number is required for all carriers that transport passengers or goods across state lines.

It is a state-wide operating body that provides special identification information to the FMCSA to logistic/moving companies engaged in interstate commerce and transportation freight over state borders.

You can apply online for an MC number at the Department of Transportation or complete a form at your local FMCSA offices. You will need to provide detailed information about your company as well as its for-hire drivers. It is important to prepare these documents well in advance.

The system assigns the MC number automatically. It is not valid until an employee of the DOT headquarters verifies it.

After this step is completed and approved, your official MC number certificate will be sent to you within two weeks.

What does the MC number serve?

It is used to monitor the safety and compliance of carriers that transport people or goods across state borders. It is also used to identify the carrier involved in an incident or accident.

Benefits of having a MC number

There are many benefits to having a MC number.

  • This reduces your chances of being in an accident
  • It's easier to obtain insurance coverage
  • Increases the credibility and reputation of your company

How do you get an MC number?

To get an MC Number, you must first apply. This usually involves giving information about your company and safety record. This includes taking a written examination and paying any applicable fees.

The process for applying will differ depending on where you live. For more information, contact your local FMCSA or transport safety agency. You can easily get an MC number with their help and support.

What is the difference between a DOT number or an MC number?

To track and supervise commercial vehicles in the United States, the FMCSA used DOT numbers and MC numbers. They differ in many key ways.

The DOT number is used primarily for safety and maintenance. The MC number, on the other hand, serves a wider purpose and allows for the tracking of carriers across state lines.

Also, getting an MC number can be more complicated than getting a number for your DOT. This involves filling out an application and submitting documents at your local FMCSA office.

Finally, obtaining an MC number generally requires more work than a DOT number. You may need to have certain insurance coverage. To be eligible for an MC number, you may need to meet operational standards.

All interstate movers must display and have a DOT number. However, not all movers need to have an MC#.

Interstate moving companies may require an MC number or a DOT number. Interstate operating authority MC numbers are required for all for-hire carriers who transport federally restricted goods or passengers over state borders. For-hire transporters who only transport goods that are not federally regulated are usually exempt from applying for an MC number.

Let's say you want one of these numbers to go on your commercial vehicle. You need to be familiar with all eligibility requirements and guidelines. This will allow you to prepare your application ahead of time and increase your chances of approval.

With the right knowledge and planning, getting a DOT number or MC number is easy.

Which one should you use?

All interstate commercial vehicles must have a DOT number. The MC number, however, is required only for certain types of interstate commercial vehicles.

For more information, contact your local FMCSA office if you aren't sure which one you require.


  • You transport passengers or goods over state lines.
  • You drive a vehicle that has a gross vehicle weight rating of (GVWR) 10,001 pounds.
  • You are transporting hazardous materials that need placards.

You should, however, use the MC number for:

  • If you are moving passengers or goods between states, your vehicle's GVWR is less than 10,001 pounds.
  • You're operating a vehicle that needs a Hazardous Material Transportation Safety Permit.
  • You are transporting hazardous materials without placards.

Wrapping up

When applying for a DOT number or MC number to your commercial vehicle, there are many things you should consider.

Understanding the differences between the two types of numbers, and their implications will help you make the right decision for your company.

We recommend that you contact your local FMCSA office in order to make the best decision for your company. They can answer your questions about MC and DOT numbers, and help you navigate the application process.

For more information on unique vehicle identification numbers, call us today. Move Car Auto Transport is happy to answer all your questions, from getting a DOT number to understanding different VIN types.