Document characteristics and preparing documents

Document characteristics and preparing documents

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Document characteristics and preparing documents

12.1 Introduction

As discussed in Chapter 7, an issuing bank of a documentary credit gives an undertaking that it will honour a complying presentation made under it.A presentation will be made by, or on behalf of, the beneficiary.

An issuing bank assumes the risk of the applicant becoming insolvent and is responsible for the recovery of any funds from the applicant in respect of any payment to a beneficiary or a nominated bank. In order to cover this
risk, an issuing bank may take security from the applicant, for example in the form of a cash deposit. More often, though, it will take comfort from any security obtained from the transport document tendered under a
documentary credit.

Learning objectives

This chapter identifies the key characteristics of documents such as transport, insurance, commercial and official. It also focuses on title to the goods, the negotiability of the transport document, whether a bank can exercise control over the goods, and how the carrier or its agent will usually deliver those goods.
After studying this topic, you should be able to:

◆◆ understand the characteristics of transport documents as a
necessary document under most documentary credits;
◆◆ explain the key features of other documents and the presentation
process; and
◆◆ understand the options available to a beneficiary when a
presentation is found to be discrepant.

Some transport documents, such as bills of lading, can provide transfer of title or confer ownership of the goods to the bank. In these circumstances, an issuing bank may have the means of obtaining possession of the goods
for resale in the event of a default by the applicant. When an issuing bank cannot obtain title to the goods, it may try to exercise some other measure of control over the goods in transit.

In addition to a transport document, a documentary credit will also require the presentation of one or more of the following documents:
◆◆ insurance documents – providing cover against risk to the goods during their carriage from the beneficiary’s premises / country of export to the country of import / applicant’s premises;

◆◆ commercial documents – identifying and describing the goods, as stipulated in the documentary credit; and
◆◆ official documents – evidencing compliance with the requirements of the country of export or the country of import.
It may also require the presentation of a financial document – that is, a draft (or bill of exchange) that determines the amount to be drawn under the documentary credit by way of honour or negotiation. The underlying characteristics of all of these documents are outlined in this chapter.

Finally, the beneficiary will arrange for the documents required under the documentary credit to be presented to the nominated bank or the issuing bank. This chapter concludes with an explanation of this presentation process and explains the options available to a beneficiary should the documents be determined as discrepant.

12.2 Preparing transport documents

The cycle of a transport document comprises three important stages:
1. understanding the requirements, as stipulated in the documentary credit;
2. creating the transport document; and
3. managing its handling from creation through to delivery of the goods.

12.2.1 Understanding the requirements as stipulated in the documentary credit

From the point of view of both the beneficiary and the concerned banks, this is by far the most important stage of the cycle. It is essential that a beneficiary understands the precise nature of the transport document required under the documentary credit. In order to achieve this understanding, a beneficiary must carefully read the wording of the transport document requirement in the documentary credit. The beneficiary should then refer to the sale contract or proforma invoice agreed with the applicant and ensure that the required document matches that which was expected. If necessary, the beneficiary should clarify any concern with the applicant and, where
appropriate, seek an amendment to the documentary credit.

It can also be useful to refer to the advising bank, because the bank may be willing to seek clarification from the issuing bank on behalf of the beneficiary. If issues are resolved in this way, there is less chance of documents being unnecessarily refused by any of the banks.

The transport document required by the documentary credit should also reflect the routing that is shown in Field 44 of the SWIFT MT700 message.
◆◆ If only Fields 44E and 44F are completed, the required document should be a bill of lading, non-negotiable sea waybill, charter party bill of lading or air transport document.
◆◆ If only Fields 44A and 44B are completed, the required document should be a multimodal transport document, road, rail or inland waterway transport document, or a courier receipt, postal receipt or certificate of
posting.
◆◆ If any three or four of Fields 44A, 44E, 44F and 44B are completed, the required document should be a multimodal transport document.

12.2.2 Creating the transport document

In the case of carriage of goods by sea, traditionally when the mate of the vessel receives the goods on behalf of the master, a mate’s receipt is issued. This document provides evidence of receipt on behalf of the vessel. It also shows that the goods have been received in good order and condition, or contains a statement as to the condition of the cargo if there are any apparent issues with the goods or their packaging.

The document will also indicate the number of packages, marks and numbers, and the name of the shipper.

When a forwarding agent or carrier completes the documentation for the bills of lading, just before or at the time the vessel is due to sail, the bills of lading are signed and delivered in exchange for the mate’s receipt.

In the case of other transport documents, there is rarely an intermediate stage, during which air, road, rail, inland waterway, courier, and parcel post transport documents are issued in exchange for acceptance and/or
receipt of the goods.

12.2.3 Managing its handling from creation through to delivery of the goods
The transport document flow is illustrated in Figure 12.1.
Figure 12.1 Transport document flow

Figure 12.1

The issuing bank examines the documents against the documentary credit and, in the case of conforming documents, honours in accordance with its terms and conditions. The applicant receives the documents in exchange for reimbursement or in terms of any arrangement made with the issuing bank.

12.3 Types of transport document
As previously mentioned, the type of transport document used is determined by the method of carriage and the routing of the goods. The next section outlines the characteristics of each type of transport document.

12.3.1 Multimodal transport documents

A multimodal transport document is a document that covers at least two different modes of transport. Multimodal transport has developed rapidly over recent decades.

In particular, it allows goods to be sent from the beneficiary’s premises to those of the applicant, using a single document. In these cases, a multimodal transport operator (MTO) or combined transport operator (CTO) undertakes contractual responsibility for ensuring that the goods are carried to their destination. The goods can be transported by a combination of different modes of transport, for example any combination of road, sea, air and rail. Under UCP 600, article 19, an MTO or CTO is not authorised to sign a transport document in either capacity. While it may be a transport operator, it must sign either as an agent of a named carrier or of the master, or in the capacity of carrier.

The shipper (the party sending the goods and usually the beneficiary) concludes a single contract of carriage with the MTO or CTO. The MTO or CTO makes its own contractual arrangements with the individual carriers
for each successive part of the carriage. The MTO or CTO need not operate its own means of transport. For this reason, MTOs or CTOs are sometimes described as ‘contractual carriers’ to distinguish them from those carriers
that physically transport the goods.

Multimodal transport techniques have a number of potential advantages, as follows.
◆◆ They can help to reduce transit times – an MTO or CTO and the shipper are able to select the quickest mode of transport for each leg of the journey, without diminishing the operator’s responsibility for the whole journey. Because an MTO or CTO deals with transport, carriers, storage and clearing agents on a daily basis on behalf of many shippers, the various associated activities can be completed more speedily at the different ports and points of despatch and arrival.

◆◆ They can lower costs – an MTO or CTO may be able to command more competitive prices across all activities, including loading, unloading, storage and carriage.

At the same time, both the applicant and beneficiary will benefit from having a single arrangement to monitor. When multimodal transport involves an element of ocean carriage, the goods are generally placed in containers. In a few cases, the goods are loaded onto a barge at a river point, and the barge (often referred to as a ‘LASH’ barge) is stowed on the ocean-going vessel at the sea port. ‘Roll-on, roll-off’ (ro-ro) techniques are also employed on shorter voyages. In these cases, a lorry (truck) or trailer carrying the goods is loaded onto the vessel, or rail car, or wagon.

12.3.1.1 Title, negotiability and transfer

If the carriage involves, for example, travel over land and then by sea, the transport document is usually titled a ‘combined’, ‘through’ or ‘multimodal’ transport document. In such circumstances, where a vessel is the mode of
transport for the last leg of the carriage, trade practice is to use it as a negotiable document capable of transferring title by delivery in the same way as a bill of lading. Negotiability and title are subject to any previous
defect in title, such as that the multimodal transport document has not been stolen or fraudulently altered.
Under a documentary credit, an issuing bank will usually require a multimodal transport document to evidence that the goods are consigned to its order, or ‘to the order of the shipper’ (or ‘to order’), and to be
endorsed by the shipper in blank or to its order.

It should be noted that neither UCP 600 nor ISBP 745 makes any reference to title or negotiability. This is left to the applicable law.

12.3.1.2 Control over goods
If an issuing bank seeks to obtain security through the goods by means of a multimodal transport document, it will insist that all originals of the document are presented to it.

If, however, the carriage does not involve a final leg by sea to the country of import, the multimodal transport document may not be classed as a negotiable document capable of transferring title by delivery, or by delivery
and endorsement (whichever applies).

3.1.3 Delivery of goods

If a multimodal transport document is issued to order of a named entity, or ‘to order’, or ‘to order of shipper’, delivery of goods will be made against the surrender of an original multimodal transport document, or against a
shipping guarantee or indemnity to facilitate the release of goods should the transport document be absent or lost. If a multimodal transport document is not issued in the manner described earlier – that is, if it is consigned to a named party (known as a ‘straight consigned document’) – goods will be delivered to the named consignee against simple identification, or against a delivery order or release note from the named consignee.

12.3.2 Bills of lading
The bill of lading first appeared in its modern form in the mid-nineteenth century and became the principal document used in maritime transport. Bills of lading are normally issued by, or on behalf of, a named carrier.

12.3.2.1 Title, negotiability and transfer
Over the years, it has become trade practice to use and accept bills of lading as transferable documents of title. Today, their legal status as negotiable documents of this type is specifically set out in the legislation of most
countries. This means that when a bill of lading is issued in negotiable form, ownership of the goods to which the bill of lading relates can be conveyed by transferring the document from one person to another. Negotiability
and title are subject to any previous defect in title, such as that the bill of lading has not been stolen or fraudulently altered.

An issuing bank will usually require bills of lading to be made out to its order, or ‘to order of the shipper’ (or ‘to order’), and to be endorsed in blank or to its order. Rights under such bills of lading can then be transferred
by endorsement and delivery. Regulations in certain countries require bills of lading to be issued to the order of the nominated bank and to be duly endorsed to the issuing bank. Depending upon the form of endorsement, a
further endorsement by the issuing bank may be required before delivery of the document to the applicant. An issuing bank that requires the issuance of bills of lading to its order should be aware of the potential liability for
charges, port dues and other expenses.

It should be noted that neither UCP 600 nor ISBP 745 make any reference to title or negotiability. This is left to the applicable law.

12.3.2.2 Control over goods
If an issuing bank seeks to obtain security through the goods by means of bills of lading, it will insist that all originals are presented to it.

12.3.2.3 Delivery of goods

Against surrender of an original bill of lading The carrier is entitled to effect delivery of goods to the holder of one original bill of lading (duly endorsed, where necessary). If more than one original bill of lading is issued, the carrier is not concerned with the whereabouts of the others.

In delivering goods to the holder of the one original bill of lading or the only original bill of lading, the carrier fulfils its primary obligation under its contract of carriage.

However, if a bill of lading is consigned to a named party (a straight consigned document), goods will be delivered to the named consignee against simple identification, or against a delivery order or release note
from the named consignee.

Against an indemnity or shipping guarantee If the goods have arrived at the port of discharge and the bills of lading have not been received, the carrier may agree to deliver the goods against an indemnity or shipping
guarantee. The carrier will almost always insist upon the issuing bank either countersigning or actually issuing the indemnity or guarantee. This is because the carrier is subsequently liable to a holder of an original bill
of lading and, as such, liability is not restricted in time. This guarantee will normally be issued in the format required by the carrier, and may be unlimited as to amount and have no expiry date, depending on the
requirements of the carrier.

It is important that the consignee arranges to clear the goods as quickly as possible after their arrival at the port of discharge or liabilities may be incurred to the port authorities for demurrage. ‘Demurrage’ may be defined as a charge levied by the port authorities for a failure to remove the goods within a specified time. Delays in receiving the original bills of lading may be the result of short sea journeys, delays in the beneficiary presenting documents to a nominated bank, or documents being held by a nominated or issuing bank because discrepancies have been found.
Indemnities (or shipping guarantees) are covered in Chapter 20.

12.3.3 Non-negotiable sea waybills

A non-negotiable sea waybill is to be consigned to a named party – usually the issuing bank in a documentary credit transaction. They are also referred to as ‘straight consigned transport documents’.

Non-negotiable sea waybills are used because a traditional bill of lading, the surrender of which is required before the carrier will deliver goods,is not practical for short sea journeys. This is because often the goods
will arrive at the port of discharge before the underlying bills of lading have been received through banking channels; as a result, the clearance of goods can be delayed. The applicant may then incur demurrage charges
and could also suffer loss in the sale of goods as a result of such delay.

The non-negotiable sea waybill was created to aid the transition process from paper-based bills of lading to electronic forms of bills of lading – that is, to allow the release of the goods without the need for the surrender of an original document to the carrier or its agent.

12.3.3.1 Title, negotiability, and transfer
A non-negotiable sea waybill is not a document of title and is not a negotiable document.

12.3.3.2 Control over goods

If an issuing bank wishes to exercise control over the goods, it will insist upon being named as the consignee. This is sometimes subject to the consignor waiving its right to change the named consignee prior to delivery. This can be achieved by the non-negotiable sea waybill containing what is known as a ‘lien’ clause – that is, a clause indicating that the carrier or its agent will not change the name of the consignee without the submission of all of the original non-negotiable sea waybills for alteration and authentication by the carrier or its agent.

12.3.3.3 Delivery of goods
Delivery is made by the carrier or its agent to the named consignee and is not dependent upon the surrender of an original non-negotiable sea waybill. Delivery may also be made to a named entity against a delivery
order or release note from the named consignee.

12.3.4 Charter party bills of lading

Shipments of large bulk consignments – that is, of commodities such as oil, rice, wheat, sugar, steel, etc – will be made on a vessel hired specifically for the shipment. This hiring arrangement is called a ‘charter party’. Such
arrangements may be concluded either for a period of time or for a single voyage. The party hiring the ship concludes a contract of carriage with the owner or its agent. This is known as the ‘charter party contract’, and will include items such as the time period for the charter, the basis for loading and unloading the cargo, the ports of loading and discharge, and the party responsible for the freight cost.

Once shipment has been effected, a charter party bill of lading is issued and signed by the owner, master or charterer, or its respective agent.

The precise legal effects of charter parties vary from one jurisdiction to another. A particular problem is that, in many cases, rights conferred by a charter party bill of lading take second place to any rights that the shipowner may have against a charterer. For example, if a charterer defaults on payment to the owner, the latter may be able to recoup its losses by selling the goods. A bank is generally not aware, nor does it need to be aware, of the terms of even the most commonly used charter party contracts. A charterer may be the applicant (in an FOB contract) or the beneficiary (in a CFR or CIF contract).

There is also uncertainty as to how clauses of the charter affect the legal rights of the holder of a charter party bill of lading. Under UCP 600, except as required or permitted by a documentary credit, bills of lading indicating
that they are issued subject to a charter party are not acceptable. If a charter party bill of lading is required or acceptable, banks will not examine the underlying charter party contract even if it is listed as a required  document.

12.3.5 Air transport documents
The transport of goods by air gives rise to the issuance of an air transport document, more commonly known as an ‘air waybill’ or ‘air consignment note’. The carrier, or its agent, issues such documents as evidence that the
goods have been accepted for carriage.

12.3.5.1 Title, negotiability and transfer
An air transport document is not a document of title and is not a negotiable document.

12.3.5.2 Control over goods

Control over goods rests with the shipper as consignor and the carrier up to the point of delivery. To allow control over the goods, UCP 600, sub-article 23(a)(v), requires that the presented air transport document be the original for consignor or shipper. This should prevent the consignor or shipper from exercising its right to request the carrier to change the destination or the consignee of the goods. The carrier or its agent should agree to such a request only if the original for consignor or shipper is handed over to it for amendment and authentication.
In most cases, if the bank wishes to take control of the goods, it will be the named consignee on the air transport document.

12.3.5.3 Delivery of goods

The carrier will deliver goods to the consignee, as shown on the air transport document, against proper identification, or against a delivery order or release note from the named consignee.

12.3.6 Road, rail or inland waterway transport documents

Transport documents covering the despatch of goods by rail or by road are known as ‘rail consignment notes’ or ‘road consignment notes’, respectively. Road consignment notes are also known as ‘truck waybills’ or ‘Convention Merchandises Routiers (CMR) notes’ (after the 1956 United Nations Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road).

These documents provide evidence that the carrier has received the goods and of the address of the consignee.

12.3.6.1 Title, negotiability and transfer

Road, rail or inland waterway transport documents are not documents of title and are not negotiable documents. The exception is when an inland waterway transport document is issued in the form of a bill of lading – that
is, to order of a named entity, or ‘to order’ or ‘to order of the shipper’.

12.3.6.2 Control of goods

The control over the goods remains in the care of the carrier.

12.3.6.3 Delivery of goods

Delivery is to the named consignee at the address shown on the document or, in the case of an inland waterway transport document issued in the form of a bill of lading as indicated in section 12.3.6.1, by the surrender of
an original inland waterway transport document.

12.3.7 Courier receipts, post receipts or certificates of posting

A courier receipt, post receipt or certificate of posting serves as evidence that the goods have been received by a courier service or post office for delivery, and show the name and address of the consignee.

12.3.7.1 Title, negotiability and transfer

These are not documents of title and are not negotiable documents.

12.3.7.2 Control of goods
The control over the goods remains in the care of the courier company or postal authority.

12.3.7.3 Delivery of goods
Delivery is to the named addressee.

12.4 Common characteristics

There are some characteristics common to all types of transport document that need to be understood when they are prepared for presentation under a documentary credit.

The following sections refer heavily to ISBP 745 – that is, the International Standard Banking Practice for the Examination of Documents under UCP 600 – the contents of which provide significant guidance as to how
each described document should be created in order to comply under a documentary credit.

12.4.1 Consignor or shipper and consignee

All types of transport document will include boxes, spaces or fields that are to be populated with the names of the consignor or shipper (the party arranging for shipment of the goods) and the consignee (the party receiving or controlling delivery of the goods). Under a documentary credit, the consignor or shipper is usually the beneficiary. This is not an absolute requirement, because any party can be named as consignor or shipper
unless the documentary credit states otherwise.

The consignee may be a named entity, in which case the document may be referred to as being ‘straight consigned’. If the transport document is issued in negotiable form, it is to show that goods have been consigned to order of a named entity, ‘to order’ or ‘to order of shipper’. If the transport document is consigned ‘to order’ or ‘to order of shipper’, it will need endorsement by the consignor or shipper in blank for it to be negotiable and available for transfer of title, or it is to be endorsed to order of a named entity (as stated in the documentary credit).
The consignee requirements for each transport document are as follows.

12.4.1.1 For multimodal transport documents
ISBP 745, paragraph D16, provides as follows.

When a credit requires a multimodal transport document to evidence
that goods are consigned to a named entity, for example, “consigned
to (named entity)” (i.e., a “straight” multimodal transport document or
consignment) rather than “to order” or “to order of (named entity)”, it
is not to contain the expressions “to order” or “to order of” preceding
the named entity, or the expression “or order” following the named
entity, whether typed or pre-printed.

ISBP 745, paragraph D17, reads as follows.

a. When a multimodal transport document is issued “to order” or
“to order of the shipper”, it is to be endorsed by the shipper. An
endorsement may be made by a named entity other than the shipper,
provided the endorsement is made for [or on behalf of] the shipper.
b. When a credit requires a multimodal transport document to
evidence that goods are consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it is
not to indicate that the goods are straight consigned to that named
entity.

12.4.1.2 For bills of lading

ISBP 745, paragraph E12, provides as follows.


When a credit requires a bill of lading to evidence that goods are
consigned to a named entity, for example, “consigned to (named
entity)” (i.e., a “straight” bill of lading or consignment) rather than
“to order” or “to order of (named entity)”, it is not to contain the
expressions “to order” or “to order of” preceding the named entity, or
the expression “or order” following the named entity, whether typed
or pre-printed.

ISBP 745, paragraph E13, reads as follows.

a. When a bill of lading is issued “to order” or “to order of the shipper”,
it is to be endorsed by the shipper. An endorsement may be made by
a named entity other than the shipper, provided the endorsement is
made for [or on behalf of] the shipper.
b. When a credit requires a bill of lading to evidence that goods are
consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it is not to indicate that the
goods are straight consigned to that named entity.

12.4.1.3 For non-negotiable sea waybills
ISBP 745, paragraph F11, provides as follows.

a. When a credit requires a non-negotiable sea waybill to evidence
that goods are consigned to a named entity, for example, “consigned
to (named entity)”, it is not to contain the expressions “to order” or
“to order of” preceding the named entity, or the expression “or order”
following the named entity, whether typed or pre-printed.
b. When a credit requires a non-negotiable sea waybill to evidence
that goods are consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it may indicate
that the goods are consigned to that entity, without mentioning “to
order of”.
c. When a credit requires a non-negotiable sea waybill to evidence
that goods are consigned “to order” without naming the entity to
whose order the goods are to be consigned, it is to indicate that
the goods are consigned to either the issuing bank or the applicant,
without the need to mention the words “to order”.

12.4.1.4 For charter party bills of lading
ISBP 745, paragraph G11, provides as follows.

When a credit requires a charter party bill of lading to evidence that
goods are consigned to a named entity, for example, “consigned
to (named entity)” (i.e., a “straight” charter party bill of lading or
consignment) rather than “to order” or “to order of (named entity)”, it
is not to contain the expressions “to order” or “to order of” preceding
the named entity or the expression “or order” following the named
entity, whether typed or pre-printed.

ISBP 745, paragraph G12, reads as follows.

a. When a charter party bill of lading is issued “to order” or “to order of the
 shipper”,it is to be endorsed by the shipper. An endorsement
may be made by a named entity other than the shipper, provided the
endorsement is made for [or on behalf of] the shipper.
b. When a credit requires a charter party bill of lading to evidence
that goods are consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it is not to
indicate that the goods are straight consigned to that named entity.

 

12.4.1.5 For air transport documents
ISBP 745, paragraph H13, provides as follows.
a. When a credit requires an air transport document to evidence that
goods are consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it may indicate that
the goods are consigned to that entity, without mentioning “to order
of”.
b. When a credit requires an air transport document to evidence that
goods are consigned “to order” without naming the entity to whose
order the goods are to be consigned, it is to indicate that the goods
are consigned to either the issuing bank or the applicant, without the
need to mention the words “to order”.

12.4.1.6 For road, rail or inland waterway transport documents

 ISBP 745, paragraph J8, provides as follows.

a. When a credit requires a road or rail transport document to evidence that goods are consigned “to order of (named entity)”, it may indicate that the goods are consigned to that entity, without mentioning “to order of”.

b. When a credit requires a road or rail transport document to evidence that goods are consigned “to order” without naming the entity to whose order the goods are to be consigned, it is to indicate that the goods are consigned either to the issuing bank or the applicant, without the need to mention the words “to order”.

c. When a credit requires an inland waterway transport document, paragraphs J8) (a) and (b) will apply except when the document is issued in the form of a bill of lading. In such event, the consignee field is to be completed according to the requirements of the credit.

12.4.2 Notify party

Most types of transport document will make provision for a ‘notify party’ to be inserted. A ‘notify party’ is a party that is to be advised by the carrier, or its agent, upon arrival of goods at the named destination. The notify party will usually be the applicant, its clearing agent or the issuing bank. A documentary credit may or may not require the transport document to indicate a named notify party or parties. If it does not, ISBP 745, paragraphs D18(b)(i) and (ii), E14(b)(i) and (ii), F12(b)(i) and (ii), G13(b)(i) and (ii), H14(b)and (ii), and J9(b)(i) and (ii) all provide similar guidance for the different types of transport document to which they relate.

As an example, the following is the text that relates to multimodal transport documents, which appears at ISBP 745, paragraph D18(b)(i) and (ii).

b. i. When a credit does not stipulate the details of a notify party, a multimodal transport document may indicate the details of any notify party and in any manner (except as stated in paragraph D18) (b) (ii)).

ii. When a credit does not stipulate the details of a notify party, but the details of the applicant appear as notify party on a multimodal transport document, and these details include the applicant’s address and contact details, they are not to conflict with those stated in the credit.

It should be noted that whenever the applicant’s address and contact details appear as part of the notify party details, whether requested in the documentary credit or not, the details must not be in conflict with those stated in the documentary credit.

12.4.3 Corrections/alterations to data content

Ideally, documents should be presented with no corrections or alterations to their data content. If corrections or alterations have been made or are required to documents not issued by the beneficiary, the beneficiary should consider the possibility of obtaining replacements prior to their presentation in order to minimise the risk of potential disputes arising or to ensure that the proper authentication has been made.

At this point, it should be noted that corrections and alterations to documents issued by the beneficiary do not require authentication, with the exception of circumstances described in ISBP 745, paragraph A7(a)(ii).

ISBP 745, paragraph A7, provides a general application for a document examiner.

a. i.  Any correction of data in a document issued by the beneficiary, with the exception of drafts (see paragraph B16), need not be authenticated.

ii. When a document issued by the beneficiary has been legalized, visaed, certified, etc., any correction of data is to be authenticated by at least one of the entities that legalized, visaed or certified, etc., the document. Such authentication is to indicate the name of the entity authenticating the correction either by use of a stamp incorporating its name, or by the addition of the name of the authenticating entity accompanied by its signature or initials.

b. i.         Any correction of data in a document, other than in a document issued   by   the   beneficiary,   is   to   appear   to   have   been authenticated by the issuer or an entity acting as agent, proxy or for [or on behalf of] the issuer. Such authentication is to indicate the name of the entity authenticating the correction either by use of a stamp incorporating its name, or by the addition of the name of the authenticating entity accompanied by its signature or initials. In the case of authentication by an agent or proxy, the capacity of acting as agent or proxy for [or on behalf of] the issuer is to be stated.

 ii.    When a document other than one issued by the beneficiary has been legalized, visaed, certified, etc., any correction of data is, in addition to the requirements of paragraph A7) (b) (i), to be authenticated by at least one of the entities that legalized, visaed or certified, etc., the document. Such authentication is to indicate the name of the entity authenticating the correction either by use of a stamp incorporating its name, or by the addition of the name of the authenticating entity accompanied by its signature or initials.

c. Any correction of data in a copy document need not be authenticated.

In addition, ISBP 745, paragraphs D28 and D29, E24 and E25, F22 and F23, G22 and G23, H23 and H24, and J18 and J19, all provide the authentication requirements for the type of transport document to which they relate.

As an example, the following is the text relating to multimodal transport documents, which is found at ISBP 745, paragraphs D28 and D29.

D28)  Any correction of data on a multimodal transport document is to be authenticated. Such authentication is to appear to have been made by the carrier, master (captain) or any one of their named agents, who may be different from the agent that may have issued or signed a multimodal transport document, provided they are identified as an agent of the carrier or master (captain).

D29)  Non-negotiable copies of a multimodal transport document need not include authentication of any corrections that may have been made on the original.

12.4.4 Signing requirements

Detailed examination of the different signing requirements for each type of transport document under the respective UCP 600, articles 19–25, is undertaken in Chapter 14. Although it is important that a transport document has been signed in the prescribed manner, this does not mean that every space, box or field shown on a transport document (as requiring a signature) needs to be populated. This position is indicated in ISBP 745, paragraph A37.

The fact that a document has a box, field or space for a signature does not in itself mean that such box, field or space is to be completed with a signature. For example, a signature is not required in the space titled “Signature of shipper or their agent” commonly found on an air waybill or “Signature of shipper” on a road transport document. Also see paragraph A17 in respect of the requirements for data to appear in a box, field or space.

 

 

 

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