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BILL OF LADING ENDORSED BY AGENT OF THE SHIPPER

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QUESTION

Dear Mr. Old Man,

Please help me with the following question:

B/L shows as follows:

Shipper: Company 1 A/C Company 2
Consignee: To Order
Endorsement made by Company 2

What does A/C mean?
Does Company 2 have right to endorse the bill of lading?

I’m looking forward to receiving your reply soon.

Thank you very much.

Best Regards,

QN
——–

ANSWER

Hi,

To tell the truth I do not know exactly what A/C stands for in this case.

In my opinion, Company 2 endorsed the bill of lading; hence, it must be an agent of the shipper, i.e., Company 1.

Where a bill of lading made out to order shows a third party as an agent of the shipper, it may be endorsed by the shipper or by a third party as agent for the shipper (see ICC Opinion R491 attached below) .

Regarding bill of lading endorsed by a party acting on behalf of the shipper, Gary Collyer has a related Q&A as follows:

Question:
B/L shows shipper as A c/o B, consigned to order.
Must A and B both endorse or one of them is enough?

Answer:
Only one party need endorse the B/L. It could be A or B.

Kind regards,

Mr. Old Man

Attachment:

Official Opinion R491 – 2000/01
Where a bill of lading is endorsed by a company stamp

QUERY

We are an international trading company trading mainly on L/C basis. We have recently had a query arise to which we cannot get a straightforward answer from our bank and it is not covered by UCP 500.

The problem has arisen with the endorsement of bills of lading when we have shipped material purchased from a third party and the shipper on the bill of lading is shown as:

Third Party Trading Company
For and on Behalf of Company T

Some banks reject the bills of lading as discrepant because the bills are endorsed only with our stamp reading Company T and not the first named company, other banks accept the endorsement of the Company T stamp without question.

I would stress that most banks accept the endorsement, but for those which do not we would like some clarification.
________________________________________
ANALYSIS/CONCLUSION

An endorsement of a bill of lading issued in the circumstances that you have outlined may be made/completed by the Third Party Trading Company (as agent for Company T or by Company T)

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