How to Get a Freight Broker License in Georgia

Freight brokers represent a vital link between shippers and carriers, helping to arrange transportation and logistics at the best possible rates for their customers. 

Acting as an intermediary for their customer, the freight agent is responsible for negotiating the cost of the shipping process, arranging for goods to be picked up and delivered, and ensuring that shipped goods arrive on time and within budget.

Transportation brokers work hand in hand with trucking companies, ports, airlines, and other logistics providers to coordinate the movement of goods through a supply chain. Some of their most common responsibilities include negotiating shipping rates, keeping an accurate track of where shipments are in the supply chain, and fielding inquiries from their clients.

To function effectively, a freight broker needs to ensure that they are entirely up to date with all the latest market trends and have a solid grasp of current regulations in the shipping industry to ensure they are always getting the best deals for their clients.

Georgia Freight Broker License Requirements

Applying for a Georgia freight broker license requires that applicants meet specific licensing requirements before submitting their application. The requirements include:

  • The applicant must be at least 18 years of age
  • They must have a high school diploma or GED equivalent
  • They must be able to pass a criminal background check
  • They must have a clean credit record
  • The applicant must be able to obtain a surety bond or trust fund agreement to a minimum amount of $10,000
  • They must also submit proof of the fact that they have acquired liability insurance coverage of an amount between $750,000 and $5 million
  • They must be able to provide proof of a valid business license from the state of Georgia

If you are applying for a Georgia freight broker license, it's a good idea to ensure you meet all the above requirements before submitting your application.

Step-by-Step Guide to Obtaining a Freight Broker License in Georgia

While the application process for obtaining broker authority in Georgia isn't particularly complicated, it does involve a fair amount of paperwork. To help you through the application process, we've put together this step-by-step guide:

1. Apply for your U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) number 

Your first step in becoming a licensed freight broker in Georgia should be to apply for your U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) number. You'll need your USDOT number before completing the rest of the registration process, so it's a good idea to get this step done early. To apply, you must provide details of your business, such as your business's name and address and the contact details of any officers who are part of your business's structure.

2. Apply for your license with the FMCSA

Once you have your USDOT number, your next step is to complete the required application forms provided by the FMCSA (federal motor carrier safety administration). The required forms are MC-1 and OP-1, which can be found and completed online through the FMCSA website. There is also a $300 application that you will need to pay at the time of submission.

3. Provide proof of your liability insurance

As mentioned earlier, one of the requirements for obtaining a freight broker license in Georgia is proof that you have received liability insurance coverage of between $750,000 and $5 million. Proof of liability insurance will need to be supplied during the application process, so make sure you have it to hand.

4. Provide proof of your surety bond

Along with your liability insurance, you will also need to provide proof of the fact that you have obtained a freight broker surety bond or trust fund to a minimum amount of $75,000. As with your liability insurance, you'll want to have arranged this in advance and have easy access to the documents needed as proof.

5. Appoint a Georgia process agent

The last step in applying for your Georgia freight broker license is to complete form BOC-3 to appoint a Georgia process agent. A process agent is an individual or corporation authorized that is based in Georgia and authorized to accept legal documents on your behalf. The individual or corporation you choose must have a physical address in Georgia.

Once you've filled out the forms and supplied the details and evidence specified above, you can submit your application. However, one more step can help you get the best start as a freight broker in Georgia: enrollment in a freight broker training program.

Freight Broker Bonds vs. Insurance

Freight broker bonds protect shippers/motor carriers, not freight brokers.However, freight broker insurance does protect freight brokers. 

Many new freight brokers that invest the bare minimum on insurance coverage quickly realize they are disqualified from working with larger shippers. Each year, more freight brokers are pulled into litigation, and ultimately go out of business due to huge judgments and legal fees they can’t afford.

Although insurance is not required to operate, the most important reasons to have it in place are to:

  • Protect your bottom line
  • Create increased security around your bond, and avoid leaving yourself open to paying legal fees by not purchasing insurance.
  • Increase top line: by having insurance, you become more attractive in today's marketplace to shippers and wholesalers.

Freight Broker Insurance Types

There are several types of insurance coverages that are recommended for freight brokers; please see the list below:

  • Business owner’s policy (BOP)
  • General liability
  • Workers' compensation
  • Commercial auto
  • Professional liability/errors and omissions (E&O)
  • Contingent cargo
  • Contingent auto liability

If you’d like to learn more about all of the insurance coverages available to you, please read our freight broker insurance guide.

Freight Broker Training and Certification Programs in Georgia

While there is no federally mandated need for you to attend freight broker training programs or certification programs to progress your application, there are benefits to these programs that should get carefully considered.

Taking an agent training program can help your business get the best start by giving you a more comprehensive understanding of the trucking industry and ensuring you are up to date with the latest regulations in the freight broker business. 

Thankfully, a range of programs exists for aspiring freight brokers in Georgia. You can find an in-person or online freight broker training course at your local community college, state universities, or specialized freight broker schools.

These courses will ensure you have a firm grasp of the basics of how a freight brokerage operates, grounding you in transportation law, record keeping, managing load boards, supply chain management, and other critically important topics.

As an aspiring freight broker, enrolling in one of these courses significantly increases your freight broker know-how and chances of running a successful freight broker operation.

Career Growth and Salary Expectations of a Freight Broker

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Georgia's average freight broker salary is $52,940. However, that salary can change depending on several factors, including location.

To make potential average salaries more transparent, we've listed some of Georgia's significant freight brokerage hubs below and their corresponding average annual wages.



Avg. annual salary

Augusta, GA 


Atlanta, GA 


Savannah, GA  


Athens, GA  


Marietta, GA  



Career growth for freight brokers in Georgia will continue to rise over the next decade. Qualified freight brokers are a vital part of supply chain management. 

As businesses continue to increase their adoption of digital platforms and international supply chains, freight brokers can expect to remain in demand for the foreseeable future.


To give you the most transparent view of the application process for becoming a freight agent in Georgia, we've answered two of the most common questions about the process below:

Q: How Much Does It Cost to Become a Freight Broker in Georgia?

A: The essential cost of becoming a freight broker in Georgia is the $300 fee required to apply. However, there are associated costs, such as the cost of setting up a business, obtaining insurance and a surety bond, and hitting a process agent, that need to be considered.

Q: How Long Does It Take to Become a Broker in Georgia?

A: There is no exact time frame for becoming a freight broker in Georgia, as a wide range of factors can influence the process. However, as a general rule, you will receive your license around three to six months after the date of your application.

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