Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • It’s possible to sell and/or allow your patrons to bring their own alcohol to your food truck if you have liquor liability insurance
  • Your food truck coverage must amount to at least $1 million in Minnesota
  • You can lose your driver’s license and your business license if your food truck doesn’t have the proper insurance coverage

Food trucks encompass the best of both worlds for Minnesota residents. It’s food to go in a quick environment, but it’s high-quality food you’re not getting in a standard fast food drive-thru.

Food trucks offer so many different options, choices, and tastes, and that’s what makes them so popular in Minnesota.

If your dream is to open your own food truck, you are not alone. If you have the skills, the talent, and the marketing abilities to really put yourself out there, you can do it.

Before you open a food truck, though, you must know there is a lot of paperwork involved. There is a business license to get, there are other forms to fill out, and there are tax issues to consider. There’s also the issue of insurance.

A food truck not only needs insurance to cover the business you’re running out of your truck, it also needs car insurance to drive it around.

Minnesota law requires all drivers have insurance on the road, and you should know what you need, how to find the best rates by comparing quotes, and what’s required of you before you begin your business plan. Enter your zip code above to start comparing quotes now.

Table of Contents

What kind of insurance do I need to operate a food truck in Minnesota?

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The state requires all Minnesota residents to purchase car insurance when they register their vehicle. The same is true of a food truck, but the insurance requirements are a little bit different for this type of vehicle.

You’re not required to carry the kind of insurance as everyone else on the road. Your food truck needs additional insurance, more insurance, and it requires a completely different minimum insurance policy.

If you are driving a food truck you don’t own because you’re financing it with a lender, you probably need additional insurance.

The bare minimum will not cover the lender’s requirements, which is why you must discuss with the lender what they want from you before you buy a food truck to run your business with.

All food trucks in Minnesota are required to have liability insurance. You need the following types:

  • public liability
  • food products liability
  • property damage insurance
  • bodily injury insurance

The minimum amount you are permitted to carry is one million dollars per occurrence. It’s a lot of insurance, but you must have it in place before applying for your business license application with the state.

If you hire people to work in your food truck with you, you must also carry workers’ compensation insurance in Minnesota. This type of coverage is for all your employees who may or may not end up hurt on the job.

It’s a requirement for any business with employees, and it’s not just food truck owners paying for this type of coverage.

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Is there additional insurance I might need in Minnesota?

Public liability, food products liability, property damage, bodily injury, and worker’s comp insurance are mandatory in Minnesota for all food truck operators. However, there might be some instances in which additional coverage is necessary.

If you have plans to allow patrons to bring their own alcohol or sell it from your food truck, you must carry a liquor liability insurance policy.

Umbrella policies are another option for Minnesota food truck drivers. This kind of policy is not required by law, but you might consider it in the foodservice industry.

Say, for example, your food truck forgets to post a sign stating you use peanut oil in some of your cooking and someone with a severe peanut allergy is unaware and has an allergic reaction.

If that customer decides to sue, your policy only covers a lawsuit up to one million dollars. If the lawsuit is settled for two million dollars, an umbrella policy would cover the additional one million you owe the customer.

Is there a penalty for driving without insurance in a food truck in Minnesota?

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The law requires you drive with all mandatory forms of insurance if you have a food truck in Minnesota. If you do not have insurance, you face many fines all separated into various categories.

If you’re driving without the minimum car insurance coverage required by the state, you are going face the following:

  • paying a fine of up to $3,000
  • having your driver’s license and registration are suspended for up to one year
  • doing community service as well as spending up to 90 days in jail
  • paying a $30 fee to reinstate your license

If you’re caught without proper business licenses, there are various penalties associated with this crime in Minnesota. It depends on the depth of the problem and what kind of business insurance you don’t have.

For example, if you are operating without all the proper business licenses in Minnesota, you are forced to close your doors.

Upon applying for and receiving coverage, you are free to reopen your business and get back to work. You will pay fines to the court, though the amount is unknown.

The judge hearing your case is going to determine how much you’ll pay in fines and whether you’re going to face any additional penalties.

If you serve alcohol or allow patrons to bring their own without proper insurance, you’ll also pay fines and face closure until you either decide to stop allowing this or obtain the proper license.

Tips for Shopping for Food Truck Insurance in Minnesota

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If you’re new to the food truck industry, one of the most important things you can do as you work on a business plan for your truck is to speak to other owners.

Find out what they suggest in terms of insurance, what they wish they’d known when they began shopping, and how they compared rates. Asking those who have already gone through this is the best way to find the help you need.

Ask agents if they specialize in a specific type of insurance. Some insurance companies put more emphasis on their business insurance, and they might be more willing to offer you a better deal or a more comprehensive coverage policy because you are a food truck owner.

It’s also imperative you find the time to assess your coverage annually. This assessment allows you to make changes, add coverage, reduce other coverage, and find the best policy.

Compare car insurance quotes right here for free. Enter your zip code below to get started.