Posts Tagged ‘bill of lading’


 

What Is A Bill Of Lading And What Is Its Purpose?

Bill Of Lading

What Is A Bill Of Lading And What Is Its Purpose?

A bill of lading is a receipt provided by the carrier to the consignee. The receipt contains a detailed list of all of the shipments goods.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will need to know exactly what is on your truck. To help make sure all of your goods are accounted for and declared, you must supply a bill of lading or pick up receipt when faxing your Pre-Arrival Review System (PARS) entry to your customs broker.

Why A Bill Of Lading Is Used

1. The main purpose of the standard straight bill of lading is it is a contract of carriage.

Other Bill Of Lading Purposes Include:

2. It may incorporate the full terms of the contract between the consignor and the carrier by reference.
3. It is a receipt signed by the carrier confirming whether goods matching the contract description have been received in good condition.
4. When completed in full, it helps the customs broker match up commercial clearance paperwork to ensure a complete declaration for all of the goods aboard the truck.

The carrier or the shipper can complete it, but the driver of the transport company is to sign and date the bill of lading once the goods are onboard their truck.

Why A Bill Of Lading Is Important

For Customs purposes the most important details on the bill of lading are:

  1. Piece count (total skids, boxes, pallets)
  2. Weight (total weight of the goods listed)
  3. Description of the goods
  4. Date (the date of pick up/export is used to establish the date for exchange rate)

If there is only one (1) location you have picked up goods from, then only one (1) bill of lading or pick up receipt is required. If you are picking up from multiple locations, then you need to have a bill of lading or pick up receipt for each location you have picked up from.

Commercial Documents

When picking up freight from the shipper, they may give commercial documents to you. If they do, please send your commercial documents to the customs broker with the bill of lading or pick up receipt. It is important that you send the customs broker all the documents you have. It helps ensure that all required documents are in place to declare those goods to Customs.

If the shipper does not supply you with commercial documents, please let the customs broker know as soon as you know, so they can work on getting the documents in order.

Other Documents

Often, a commercial invoice and bill of lading are sufficient for the customs broker and CBSA to process your load. There are many instances where special documentation will be required. Some examples of goods that need additional documents are:

  • CFIA regulated goods (fresh fruits & vegetables, fresh cut flowers)
  • Transport Canada regulated goods (vehicles) – which require another government agency (in addition to CBSA) to review the import

When faxing your PARS to the customs broker, simply affix your barcode label to the bill of lading. Make sure you are not covering up any important information. Be sure to clearly indicate which port you are crossing at and on what date and time. Please also include your phone number so that you can be contacted in the case there are any documentation issues.

Remember to ALWAYS confirm that your load has been set up before you get to the border.

Be accountable for the goods you are transporting and your cross border experience. Providing all the appropriate paperwork to your customs broker will truly ease your journey. If you need assistance with your bill of lading or any other customs brokerage or freight forward services, feel free to contact the experts at Pacific Customs Brokers for all of your international trade needs. 

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Meeting ACI eManifest Document Demands

ACI eManifest White TruckAs an ACI eManifest service provider, one thing has become abundantly clear to us in the past several months. Many carriers, and shippers too for that matter, struggle mightily when it comes to documentation for their loads.

While there are carriers out there running up and down the highway with not much more than scribble on a truck stop napkin, there are many whose paperwork processes are flawless. Though the ACI eManifest program does not demand any paperwork that was not previously required for cross-border transportation, it has certainly shone a light on many of the flaws and inadequacies in some carriers’ paperwork processes.

The bulk of the burden for producing accurate paperwork falls to the shipper. However, it quickly becomes the carrier’s problem if this paperwork is incomplete or inaccurate. Is there a more common reason for delays at the border than improperly prepared documents?

As it is the carrier that pays the price for these delays, in both lost time and possible monetary penalties, it is their right and responsibility to demand complete and accurate paperwork. Much to our surprise, many carriers do not even get a properly prepared bill of lading from the shipper. The bill of lading is quite obviously a key component in any transportation movement and is referred to repeatedly by Canada Border Services Agency when discussing paperwork requirements in relation to ACI eManifest. Bills of lading will also be a key part of any Customs audit and, if called upon to produce them, you want to be sure that they are accurate.

As most carriers are aware,  CBSA extended the “voluntary compliance” period to “fall 2013”. They also advised that they would give 45 days notice as to the implementation date for “Mandatory Compliance”. As fall is already here, it is safe to assume that the announcement could come any day now. We strongly advise carriers to review and, where necessary, revise their paperwork processes. In order to assist carriers and shippers, CBSA has produced an updated document titled Information for U.S. Shippers – eManifest requirements for commercial shipments”. Carriers and importers may want to review this document and forward it to shippers so that everyone is on the same page with respect to document requirements.

If you have any further questions regarding ACI eManifest, please contact our Border Pro eManifest Team at 855.542.6644 or via email at [email protected]. We also welcome your questions regarding ACI eManifest and its implementation in our comments section below.

Additional Reading:

 

How To Cross The Border With A Multiple Load Shipment

Big-White-Truck-600In a situation where a commodity is invoiced as a single transaction and it is an over-sized shipment such as a large building and or machinery that cannot physically be moved on one truck, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has a provision to handle multi-load moves with one invoice value. The industry terminology for this type of special entry is a Prime and Entered to Arrive (ETA) entry.

In these cases, the entire quantity of goods will be accounted for when the first shipment arrives, and the remainder will be processed as a paper release package for each load to follow. This means drivers carrying any parts or components for goods previously accounted for on one invoice will need to clear Customs against the original declaration previously provided to CBSA at the same port of entry as approved.

Step 1: Prepare the required carrier documentation.

Each driver should have:

  1. a bill of lading and
  2. a packing list indicating all goods on board

 

These documents should be noted with a specific reference number being used to identify the original entry. Common examples would be the serial number, unit number, VIN number, PO number, Shippers number or any other number that is unique to the complete commodity.

In addition, the driver should note which load number they are of the total number of trucks needed to complete the delivery. For example: load 3 of 12.

Step 2: Inform your customs broker.

Next step is to notify your customs broker of your intent to cross the border. Indicate the

  • Port (this can only be a CBSA listed port on the CBSA approval form)
  • Estimated time of arrival (ETA) and
  • Phone number for the driver in the event the driver needs to be reached

Ensure that the same cargo control number that was used for the cargo transmission of the ACI eManifest is provided to your customs broker

Have components on board for more than one prime entry or have extra parts that are not for a prime entry?

In this case, the driver will need to generate for each list of items that will be specific to each prime entry:

  • separate bill of lading (BOL),
  • separate packing list and
  • separate CCN

for each list of items that will be specific to each prime entry.

Extra parts shipped with an Entered to Arrive (ETA) load that are not a part of an original transaction will also require a separate BOL, packing list, Canada Customs or commercial invoice indicating all information required for Customs and a separate CCN.

Note:

  • Drivers generally will not be provided any “invoices” for their load because the master invoice for the complete transaction would have already been declared to CBSA. More than likely, the driver will have a packing list, BOL, indication of what unit they have parts for, load number and CCN number. If the drivers have parts for more than one unit, they need to provide a separate list.
  • ACI emanifest note?: ?ACI eManifest compliant carriers will still be required to electronically file cargo and conveyance data one hour prior to arrival at the first port of entry.

 

Have questions about crossing the border with your multi-load shipment? What has your experience been? Share them in our comments section below.

 

The Importance of a Bill of Lading

What is a Bill of Lading (BOL):

A bill of lading is a legal document between the shipper of particular goods and the carrier detailing the type, quantity, date of direct shipment and destination of the goods being carried. The bill of lading also serves as a receipt of shipment when the goods are delivered to the predetermined destination. This document must accompany the shipped goods, no matter the form of transportation, and must be signed by an authorized representative from the carrier, shipper and receiver. The carrier or the shipper can complete it, but the driver of the transport company is to sign and date it once the goods are on-board.

What does Customs look for on a Bill of Lading?

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) requires to know:

  • the number of pieces
  • total weight and
  • date of direct shipment for each shipment on board

The number of pieces, total weight and date of direct shipment is a requirement for the declaration made by the importer of record/customs broker. It is highly recommended that you provide a copy of the bill of lading to the importer of record/customs broker so that the information can be confirmed against the corresponding invoice(s) being declared. If it is not provided to the customs broker, the carrier must still advise by other means, the number of pieces, total weight and date if direct shipment.

A carrier must always make the bill of lading available to a CBSA officer in the event it is requested.

 

Do you have questions? Please share yours in the comments section below or contact Pacific Customs Brokers.

Crossing the Border with a Multi-Load Shipment?

Red truckIn a situation where a commodity is invoiced as a single transaction and it is an oversize shipment such as: a large building and or machinery that cannot physically be moved on one truck, Canada Border Services Agency has a provision to handle multi-load moves with one invoice value. The industry terminology for this type of special entry is a Prime and Entered to Arrive (ETA) entry. In these cases, the entire quantity of goods will be accounted for when the first shipment arrives, and the remainder will be processed as paper release package for each load to follow.

This means drivers carrying any parts or components for goods previously accounted for on one invoice will need to clear Customs against the original declaration previously provided to CBSA at the same port of entry as approved.

Carrier documentation requirements:

Each driver should then have a bill of lading and a packing list indicating all goods on board. These documents should be noted with a specific reference number being used to identify the original entry. Common examples would be the serial#, Unit#, VIN#, PO#, Shippers# or any other number that is unique to the complete commodity.

In addition, the driver should note which load number   they are of the total number of trucks needed to complete the delivery. For example:   load 3 of 12.

Next step is to notify the customs broker of your intent to cross the border. Indicate the PORT (which can only be the CBSA port listed on the CBSA approval form), estimated time of arrival (ETA) and phone number for the driver in the event the driver needs to be reached. If a cargo control number (CCN) has not been provided, please ensure that the driver is aware of the carriers “carrier code”, as a manifest will be required upon arrival. Charges to generate a cargo control number/barcode for the driver may apply if not previously provided.

Do you have components on board for more than one prime entry OR extra parts not for a prime entry?

If so, the driver will need to generate a SEPARATE bill of lading (BOL), separate packing list & separate CCN for each list of items that will be specific to each prime entry.

Extra parts shipped with an ETA load that are not a part of an original transaction will also require a separate BOL, packing list, Canada Customs or commercial invoice indicating all information required for Customs & separate CCN.

Comments:

Please note that drivers generally will not be provided any “invoices” for their load because the master invoice for the complete transaction would have already been declared to CBSA   More than likely, the driver will have a packing list, BOL, indication of what unit they have parts for, load# & CCN#. If the drivers have parts for more than one unit, they need to provide a separate list. For more information on this blog, please feel free to contact the carrier help desk at 855.542.6644 or email [email protected]