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Bill Of Lading

1. The bill lading is the declaration of the master of the vessel by which he acknowledges that he received the goods on board of his ship and assures that he will carry the goods to the place of destination for delivery, in the same condition as he received them against handing of the original bill of lading.

2. The definition of a bill of lading given in the ―HAMBURG RULES is the following.
BILL OF LADING means a document which evidence a contract of carriage by sea and the taking over of loading of the goods by the carrier, and by which the carrier undertakes to deliver the goods against surrender of the document.

3. A provision in the document that the goods are to be delivered to the order of a named person, or to order or o bearer, constitutes such an undertaking.

4. The bill of lading serves as a
a) A receipt of the goods by the ship-owner acknowledging that the goods of the stated species, quantity and conditions are shipped to a stated destination in a certain ship or at least received in custody of the ship owner for the purpose of shipment.
b) A memorandum of the CONTRACT OF CARRIAGE by which the master agrees to transport the goods to their destinations all terms of the contract which was in fact concluded prior to signing of the bill of loading are repeated on the back of this document
c) A document of title, signifying that the holder has the legal right to possession of the goods it describes.

Types of Bill of Lading
  • Long Term B/L
  • Short Term B/L
  • Direct B/L
  • Combined transport B/L
  • Through B/L
  • Received for Shipment B/L
  • Straight B/L

Hague Visby rule apply to every type of bill of lading.
A typical bill of lading may contain the following:-
  1. reference number
  2. name and address of shipper and consignee
  3. ports of loading and discharging
  4. name of carrying vessel
  5. number and kind of packages
  6. gross weight
  7. description of goods
  8. the place where freight is payable
  9. numbers of original bill of lading
  10. place and date of issue
  11. signature of carrier/master
  12. carrier's standard terms and conditions


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