shipping broker

Documents you need when shipping your cargo

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have an impact on production and supply chains. Demand for specific goods has also increased, causing prices to rise. If your business has seen an increase in demand from your customers, then making sure your supply chain can keep up is even more critical than ever before.

However, importing and exporting often has multiple rules and regulations that must be followed in order for shipments to be timely and meet the needs of your business, particularly in relation to your documentation. With that in mind, here are the important documents that you need to make sure are completed and part of your shipping process. Working with your international shipping broker, you can make sure that all your documentation is in order, thus avoiding costly delays in the shipping and receiving of your goods.

Bill of Lading

Whether you are shipping internationally or domestically, it is important to make sure that you have a complete bill of lading. This document is likely going to be issued by your carrier or an agent of the carrier. This document needs to be in compliance with both national shipping regulations and the carrier’s standards.

This document will include the name of the shipper, the recipient, and their basic contact information. There will also be a description of the goods included in the shipment, their quantities and weight, as well as the total weight of the entire shipment. Your carrier might also include data regarding when the shipment was picked up, the anticipated delivery date, and even shipping charges, whether pre-paid or collect.

Your Packing List

The packing list is another document that often accompanies a shipment. It allows your recipient to confirm that all the items on the bill of lading are actually delivered. Some companies require that a packing list accompany all shipments.

International Shipping – Certificate of Origin

Once you ship your goods internationally, it is important that your shipment have a certificate of origin. Your international shipping broker can assist in making sure that your certificate has been obtained and included with all the other paperwork for your shipment. What is included in a certificate of origin?

It establishes where the shipment originated and who was responsible for preparing the goods included within it. There is also an insurance certificate, which outlines the coverage required to protect the shipment during its travel route, thus protecting your interests and those of the shipper.

Why Are Custom Documents Necessary?

Depending on the countries involved, there may be additional documentation required in order for your goods to enter or exit the country. Working with an international shipping broker can assist in making sure that none of these critical documents is missing, thus potentially delaying your shipment at its origin or destination.

Plus, these documents serve as a protection for everyone in the shipping process. It helps to make sure that orders are correct, deliveries are prompt, and that rates are compatible between the shipper and carrier.

These necessary documents make it easier for shipping officials in each country to identify what was shipped, how much, and verify that the weights match up. When your shipments are properly documented, then your journey through customs can be significantly less complicated. If these documents are not prepared properly, then your shipment will not be allowed to continue its journey until errors are corrected or replacement documentation has been received. That means your shipment could end up costing more in terms of storage fees while correct documentation is in process.

However, with constantly changing shipping regulations from country to country, an international shipping broker can be a beneficial part of your process to make sure your documentation is accurate. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your business manage its international shipments.

Atlanta Customs Brokers is one of the oldest and most trusted customs brokerage and shipping firms in Atlanta. Established in 1985, our company has been a fixture in and around the Atlanta airport and Savannah port for more than 31 years. We enjoy working with our international partners and enjoy what we do. If you are a first-time importer or exporter or a large corporation, we can handle your needs.