When Cargo is Lost
Based on the 20 years’ experience of ACEX experts.
In the world of logistics and supply chains almost everyone faces loss or damage of cargo. There is a lot of similar cases in the general practice.
The reasons can be different:
- carelessness and non professionalism of the personnel;
- ill-considered procedures of loading/ unloading and transportation of freights;
- force majeure (natural disasters, accidents), etc.
Your cargo was delivered in an inadequate condition or lost. What to do and how to prevent a similar situation in the future? To secure oneself as much as possible against unjustified risks the Head of ACEX Business Development Alexandra Chagina advises to follow a simple algorithm.
Preparation of documents
- Add the procedure of acceptance and transfer of cargo to the contract for rendering services in transportation as the majority of damages occur during acceptance and transfer.
- Together with the shipping request send the copy of the invoice so in case of damage you will not need to prove the cost of cargo and the extent of damage.
- If the cargo is important, take out the insurance. You can do it yourself or ask the carrier to send the copy of the insurance policy with a request.
- Prepare the transport document with a mark related to the acceptance or the delivery-acceptance certificate to testify transfer of cargo.
- At acceptance of the cargo examine it. Sign the documents if only there are no visible damages of packing of the cargo.
Damage was found
- Draw up the statement of damage with signatures of the representative of the carrier and the person accepting the cargo and mark the damage. If the cargo has been insured, call the representative of the insurance company.
- Make a claim in writing addressed to the head of the transport company with the description of a situation and the indication of the extent of damage, the original copy of the claim needs to be transferred to representatives of the carrier in the shortest possible time. If the cargo has been insured, send the same claim to the representatives of the insurance company.
There is no established format of a claim; it is formed in a free form on the official form of the company.
- In case of unreasonable refusal of compensation a claim is submitted to arbitration court.
Initially correctly processed documents will allow you save time, energy and money during the trial.
Cargo is lost
Do not panic. The cargo is usually found in 99,9% of cases after the attentive review of a warehouse or carrying out the inventory. If there are no results in 2-3 days, we recommend you to address points G and H of our approximate algorithm.
Important to know
Without going into legal detail, we want to mention the important points allowing the cargo owner to apply for compensation for the lost/damaged goods.
- The carrier remains the main defendant, if only he doesn't prove the opposite.
- The carrier company has to prove the fact that the situation has arisen for the insuperable reasons independent of the carrier. For instance force majeure such as floods, earthquakes, other natural disasters, accidents because of the third parties, etc.
- The cargo owner who files a claim has to have a document confirming the transfer of the goods. Without supporting documents, it is impossible to prove it.
- The claim has to be filed in the time stated in the contract for transportation.
Forwarder or carrier
There is a difference between working with the carrier and the forwarder. The carrier accepts cargo for delivery from point A to point B. The forwarder is a legal entity which provides full maintenance of transportation. The forwarder acts on behalf of the cargo owner and in his interests, and his responsibility is determined by the same rules by which the relevant carrier is responsible to the forwarder.
In the next material you will find out about the rules of insurance of cargo, the extent of responsibility of the carrier and responsibility limitations of the forwarder that exist in the Russian market of transportations.
The material of the article is advisory and is based on the experience ACEX experts.Calculate the cost of transportation online