We all love ordering things online and receiving them, and we always keep purchase records if anything happens. We should follow the same principle regarding larger shipments, especially with containers and other products coming from abroad.
Business owners or people who need large shipments should always keep the papers they receive from their freight forwarder. According to Dedola Global Logistics, you should always ask for all the necessary documents, and freight forwarders should comply with that request. They need to provide every document that is related to the transport. They can also assist if you can’t fill in any records.
What is the Bill of Lading?
To better understand if a freight forwarder can issue a bill of lading, first, you need to know what it is. The bill of lading is a document required for any form of cargo transportation. It has to be signed by the authorized parties. Also, on the bill, there are details about the cargo. You can see the dates, quantity, weight, category, names and addresses, and the freight company’s name.
Also, you need to keep in mind that the bill of lading is an important document, but it is not the only one. Even if you have the bill of lading, your transport can suffer setbacks if you miss other documents.
Who Can Issue a Bill of Lading?
There is a difference between the bills of lading. Every freight forwarder can issue a bill of lading, regardless of transportation method, whether land, water, or air. Other third-party entities that help the primary carrier can also issue a bill of lading. The one issued by the main carrier is called a Master bill of lading, and the one issued by the third party is called a House bill of lading.
Since both main and third-party freight forwarders can sign the bill of lading, there are a few differences between them. The master bill is always subject to the Hague Rules, The Hague-Visby Rules, and US COGSA. On the other hand, the house bill of lading is not always subjected to any of those rules. Another difference is that the carrier and details will be on the master bill, and the third-party forwarding company will be on the house bill of lading.
How is The Bill of Lading Issued?
Since the bill of lading acts as a contract between the primary carrier and the customer, it has different terms and conditions. When you receive the bill, you need to pay close attention because some of the terms and conditions may not be in your favor. It is all related to liability and if the customer and carrier are covered in case anything happens to the cargo.
Issuing a bill of lading is one of the most critical steps and needs to be filled correctly. Otherwise, it can delay the transport and lead to confiscation or further investigation of the goods.
As mentioned above, the bills of lading are issued by freight forwarders. Part of the process is the gathering of all necessary information. The document can’t be issued without the exact details because if any authority finds mistakes, it can have various legal impacts. Fines or confiscation can be the result of faulty documents.
When the Bill of Lading is Not Accepted
There are a few cases when the bill of lading issued by a freight forwarder may not be accepted. It is not often, but unfortunately, it can happen. A master bill of lading can’t be accepted if it is not filled properly, but there are other situations when it may not be accepted. For example, If the third-party freight forwarder fills a house bill of lading.
A house bill of lading may not provide enough assurance to banks if you need to receive financing. It does not assure that the freight forwarder that issued the bill will honor the terms and conditions. It may be declined, and some banks accept only a master bill of lading. Third-party carriers may not trust a house bill enough if any terms are broken, leading to rejection.