Consignee of a Bill of Lading

Understanding consignee field of a bill of lading and its effect on delivery of goods and payments.

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What Does Consignee Mean?

Consignee means a person entitled to delivery of the goods under a contract of carriage indicated on a bill of lading.

Consignee is one of the most important parties on a bill of lading.

The way that consignee field is completed can affect how the goods are to be transferred from shipper to consignee.

There are three possible consignee field instructions available on a bill of lading.

Straight Bill of Lading: Bill of lading states the consignee’s actual name. Depending on the commercial law of the destination country, consignee may clear the goods with or without needing to present an original bill of lading.

Straight bills of lading may create a risk factor for the shippers if they have not received the payment in advance of the shipment.

Especially under letters of credit and cash against goods payment methods, this option should be used with caution.

Negotiable Bill of Lading: Negotiable bills of lading are the ones that are consigned to order of a named party such as to order of the shipper, to order of the issuing bank or to order of the importer etc.

Title of the goods can be transferred through endorsement by stamp and signature.

Negotiable bills of lading generally used under letters of credit and cash against documents payment methods.

Bearer Bill of Lading: This option states that the goods must be delivered by the carrier to the party,whose in possession of the original bills of lading.

Points of Consideration When Filling Out Consignee Field:
  1. Consignee field determines how the title of goods are to be transferred from shipper to consignee.
  2. Completing consignee field may have direct effect on delivery of goods in which may have negative effect on shippers financial interests.
  3. Selected payment method is also affecting consignee field completion.
  4. Under open account and cash in advance payment methods consignee field is usually filled out in straight form.
  5. Under letters of credit and cash against payment methods consignee field is usually filled out in negotiable form.

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