What Is Included On A Bill Of Lading?

In the moving and storage industry, contracts and legal liability issues are commonplace. Last week, we talked about what is arguably the most important contract you are responsible for: the bill of lading, or BOL. First, it is important to understand what a BOL is. Next, you’ll want to understand exactly what is included on one.

Your bill of lading works as a receipt of freight services. It is required before you can move a shipment and legally binding. So what details are included?

•  The shipper’s name(s) and complete addresses
• The receiver’s name(s) and complete addresses
• The date of the shipment
• The number of units being shipped
• The type of packaging the shipment is in: Cartons, pallets, drums and skids are included in this detail
• The account numbers used between the businesses for order tracking
• Any special instructions for prompt and worry-free delivery
• A thorough description of the items being shipped: Be sure you include the material and the common name
• The NMFC freight classification for all items in the shipment
• The declared value of the shipment
• The exact weight of the shipment
• If the shipment contains a Department of Transportation declared hazardous material – a note stating that is included

As the owner or operator of a moving business, you want to make sure you do everything possible to protect you, your employees, and your shipments. Be sure to always review your bill of lading before shipment and make sure the carrier on pick up also reads it over. You want to avoid the tendency to “blindly” sign off on something without a thorough read-through. After all, if there are discrepancies between the BOL and the actual shipment, you could be liable!

Be sure you have the protection you need in the event of any unforeseen circumstances and review your mover’s insurance policy today. Remember, when you speak with one of the agents at Wolpert Insurance, we can help with all of your questions… from the bill of lading and beyond!