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Bill of Lading (BL or BOL): Meaning and definition

Bill of Lading (BOL)

What is Bill of Lading (BL or BOL)?

A Bill of Lading is a legal document issued by a carrier, usually a shipping company or freight forwarder, to acknowledge the receipt of goods for shipment. It serves as both a contract of carriage and a receipt of the goods being transported. A Bill of Lading is essential in exports because:
• If there is an agreement between the shipper and the carrier, the Bill of Lading will serve as Evidence of Contract.
• The carrier hands it to the person who is receiving the goods, thus, making BL as a receipt. The goods are loaded, as indicated in this document.
• It serves as the Document of the list of goods, which is used for verification purposes after the importer has received the goods.

Information on export products, number of products, billing details, payment details, special instructions to be taken care of while storing or transporting them, etc. are all included in a Bill of Lading (BOL) to facilitate this process.

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