What Do I Need to Start a Trucking Company in Illinois?

by Mary Jane; Updated September 26, 2017

A trucking business can serve two purposes -- it can rent out trucks for paying customers so they can drive them and use them as they please, or customers can pay for a truck and driver given by the company for use. Regardless of the purpose, you must complete legal requirements and get the proper permits to run a trucking company in the state of Illinois. In addition, being active in the trucking industry may add credibility to your trucking business.

Legal Requirements

You must register your Illinois trucking company with the local office of the secretary of state of Illinois if you operate the trucking company as a partnership, corporation or limited-liability structure. As a sole-proprietor trucking company owner, a form of business in which you drive around and perform services for paying customers, you can register the business with the local county clerk office in Illinois, according to the registration details outlined by the U.S. Small Business Administration. In addition, you must contact the Internal Revenue Service to get an employer identification number for taxes if you have employees working for you or operate the business as a corporation or limited-liability structure.

Location and Trucks

A trucking company requires a storage space where the trucks can be stored overnight or during periods where the trucks are not in use. In addition, an office may need to be built on the property so you can meet with potential truck renters or to schedule driving plans for customers if you drive the trucks. A zoning permit may be required for the local building and planning department if land needs to be developed as a storage space. In addition, a building permit is required from the same department if an office needs to be built on the property.

Contracts and Insurance

Insurance will be necessary if your business rents out trucks for private individuals to drive. Your business must be protected if a rented driver crashes a truck. Insurance is also required for the storage space where the trucks are parked, along with office insurance. Apply for an alarm permit from the local county police department so your business is protected.

Trucking Association

As a trucking business owner, consider becoming a member of the Illinois Trucking Association, a nonprofit trade group that promotes the interests of the trucking industry in the state. Staying active in the trucking industry may add a level of credibility and knowledge, which could help in making service sales to customers. You get the benefits of attending seminars, council meetings, conventions and association events, which includes the truck driving championship.

About the Author

Based in Toronto, Mary Jane has been writing for online magazines and databases since 2002. Her articles have appeared on the Simon & Schuster website and she received an editor's choice award in 2009. She holds a Master of Arts in psychology of language use from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.