Tell the FMCSA that Freight Dispatchers are NOT the same as Freight Brokers!

Tell the FMCSA that Freight Dispatchers are NOT the same as Freight Brokers!

June 9, 2022
Signatures: 612Next Goal: 1,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by Philip Nenadov

Federal Register # 2022-12574

Issue at hand:

Large broker and carrier groups are telling the FMCSA that dispatch services act the same as freight brokers. They say this because both entities have similar functions. While this is true, Freight Brokers handle money, making them cash managers; therefore, they must have a federal license. Here is an example of what I am saying:

A shipper gives the broker $1000 for the load to be moved. The broker negotiates with the truck the amount to do the load. Let's say it is $800. the broker gives the carrier $800 of the $1,000 that the shipper paid to complete the service, which was moving the freight. The agreement between AND expectation from the shipper is that the broker will negotiate a rate, keep their commission, and give the rest of the shipper's money to the carrier. Also, the broker must have a license because they bought the service from the carrier with the shipper's money.

Also, the shipper and carrier don't know each other and are kept from knowing each other. This also is a big difference between a broker and a dispatcher. Below is a definition of a broker:

According to Oxford Dictionary:

The "NOUN" meaning of the word.

a person who buys and sells goods or assets for others. "the centralized lenders operate through brokers."


So, we see that the broker is the one that is buying the freight from the shipper, not the dispatch service, there the "Freight Broker" has the fiduciary responsibility to pay the carrier, NOT the dispatch service.

Now, here is the "VERB" meaning of the word broker:

arrange or negotiate (a settlement, deal, or plan). "fighting continued despite attempts to broker a ceasefire."


This is where a dispatch service should be able to continue to do business legally and is currently doing business. They are like an employee of a company. They DO NOT and ARE NOT allowed to touch any money from the shipper or broker to the carrier. They represent the carrier in a sales and administrative role. They primarily serve motor carriers, too small to have staff on board and carriers with 1-3 trucks.

If dispatch services are banned, so should truck agents from companies like Landstar, Admiral Merchants, PTL Trucks Lines and any other large company with independent truck agents who are not W2 dispatchers or employees.

The VERB part of the work: "Broker," is where everyone gets hung up on. Yes, some dispatchers are taking money off the top of the load and acting as brokers. These are the culprits, and they need to be dealt with. But let's look at the impact this will have on the industry.

1. Over 78% or 225,000 motor carriers have 1-3 trucks. At least 50% of the carriers in this category depend on outside help to assist them in their daily functions, such as searching for a load, completing paperwork, factoring their freight bill, and handling problems. Many carriers cannot or do not know how to do these functions and drive simultaneously.

2. The FMCSA determines whether dispatchers are "Bona Fide" agents of the carrier. What that means is does the dispatch act as an employee of the carrier, disallowing them to be "employees" of multiple carriers. If they decide that they are, which they are not, that means each of the 225,000 carriers with 1-3 trucks that would-be candidates for dispatch services would have to hire 225,000 dispatchers. How is that feasible? Can a driver of 1 truck afford to have a dispatcher on the payroll? This burdensome expense and financial hardship for the carrier plus the loss of ability to work for a dispatcher to stay in business.

3. There would be millions affected by this directly and indirectly. Small family businesses, single parents who work at home supporting their family, minorities, small carriers who can't drive as much, making less revenue, brokers (Yes, many brokers depend on dispatch services) and more. The ripple effect would be significant.

4. If the dispatchers are forced to become brokers, they cannot take freight from other brokers who mistakenly think that is double-brokering or have policies that do not allow them to give freight to other brokers.

At a time when drivers and workers are hard to find, there are supply chain crises, very high fuel prices, and inflation beyond belief; doing this would add fuel to the fire.

The FMCSA will decide whether Freight Dispatchers are the same as Freight Brokers. They opened the comments section on the FMCSA website on June 10, 2022. and will (by law) close the comments section on November 15, 2022. So NOW IS THE TIME TO SAY SOMETHING, OR WE WILL LOSE OUR VOICE.

To the FMCSA, Department of Transportation, The Senate Committee of Transportation, to our leaders and members of congress, please hear our plea: 

This decision will : 
Ruin millions of lives 
Damage an industry already hurting due to multiple LARGE issues affecting it.    Give unfair advantage to large carriers and brokers 
Create unfair penalties to unsuspecting innocent small carriers and dispatchers 


If they have to be licensed, that is fine but do not eliminate the position!!

Here is a link to the FMCSA Register page:

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