Parts of a Bill of Lading
Welcome to the 1st of a 4 part series about the different parts a Bill of Lading (abbreviated to B/L), one of the MOST important documents in the whole shipping and freight chain, that needs to be filled up..
Please bear in mind that this “generic” information and does not refer to any line in particular as each line have their own format and setup..
In this article we will discuss the address and reference details..
Shipper – is the name and address details of the shipper who is shipping the cargo.. This may or may not be the actual owner or manufacturer of the cargo, but could also be a trader or freight forwarder depending on the type of bill of lading that is issued.. This could also be different from the exporter of the cargo..
Consignee – is a key entity in the shipping chain and this field reflects the name and address details of the person or company that is legally allowed to receive the cargo covered in the bill of lading..
This may or may not be the actual owner or recipient of the cargo as it could be a bank or trader or forwarder depending on the type of bill of lading that is issued..
Being named as the consignee on the bill of lading also comes with the risk and responsibility of being held accountable for many issues such as non-clearance of cargoes, late clearance, claims etc..
Notify – is the name and address details of the person who should be notified of the arrival of the cargo.. Depending on the bill of lading that is issued this could be the actual buyer or receiver of the goods, clearing and forwarding agent or the trader.. Generally the notice of cargo arrival is to be sent to this notify party..
Bill of Lading Number – is the unique number provided to the shipment covered under a specific bill of lading.. This is allocated by the shipping line and must be quoted by the client for any queries, sailing info, arrival info, claims etc..
Reference Numbers – this space can be used to update any reference numbers specific to the client or the freight forwarder which they will use to trace their shipments..
Carriers Agents – here the details of the agents at discharge port is usually recorded by the shipping line so that the destination agent of the client/forwarder can contact the shipping lines agents to query the status of the shipment or go for release etc..
Balance in the next article.. Stay tuned..