This is a unique policy for owner-operators who lease their equipment on a long-term basis to motor carriers. Most lease agreements make the motor carrier responsible only when operating on their behalf or within their business. Non-Trucking Use (NTU) coverage is designed for the protection of independent truckers when they are not working under lease to a motor carrier, under dispatch of a carrier, or carrying property in any business.
At one time, this was called bobtail or deadhead liability. However, those two terms can also be used to describe normal operations on behalf of the carrier. An example: an owner-operator finishes a delivery and is dispatched to bobtail or deadhead to pick up another load. Non-trucking use is a better generic title for the actual coverage an owner-operator is buying. NTU exposures apply when an owner-operator is no longer operating under the terms of his/her lease agreement.
For example, a situation may occur when a driver takes his/her tractor to pick up some groceries and runs a stop sign, hitting a car. Liability coverage would be provided for the bodily injury and property damage the driver causes. NTU liability excludes an owner-operator doing any hauling of property, not just for the motor carrier. As such, it would also exclude coverage when using the insured unit to help a friend move his or her business.