Provisions of freight forwarder and freight forwarding services

Laws and regulations of the Republic of Latvia governing transport and forwarding business

Regulations No 301 of the Cabinet of Ministers

Riga, 17 October 1995 (minutes No 55.4 §) Issued in compliance with the "On restoration of the Law "The Composition of the Cabinet of Ministers” dated 1 April 1925", Section 14, Clause 3

I. Terms used in the Regulations

Forwarder — an entrepreneur who provides forwarding services to the consignor (henceforth — forwarding services) at the expense of the consignor. Subforwarder — a forwarder providing forwarding services to another forwarder. Consignor — natural or legal person ordering the forwarder to provide forwarding services and giving a freight for carriage. Consignor and recipient (consignee) may be one and the same person. In such case the consignor additionally acquires reception rights, obligations and responsibility. Carrier — an entrepreneur which undertakes the liability to perform carriage. Consignee — natural or legal person, who/which receives the freight in the destination. Freight/cargo — item to be carried. Transport process — a set of operations to be performed by forwarder and carrier from the moment a cargo has been accepted for carriage until the moment it has been given to the consignee.

I. Terms used in the Regulations

Forwarder — an entrepreneur who provides forwarding services to the consignor (henceforth — forwarding services) at the expense of the consignor.
Subforwarder — a forwarder providing forwarding services to another forwarder.
Consignor — natural or legal person ordering the forwarder to provide forwarding services and giving a freight for carriage. Consignor and recipient (consignee) may be one and the same person. In such case the consignor additionally acquires reception rights, obligations and responsibility.
Carrier — an entrepreneur which undertakes the liability to perform carriage.
Consignee — natural or legal person, who/which receives the freight in the destination.
Freight/cargo — item to be carried.
Transportation process — a set of operations to be performed by forwarder and carrier from the moment the cargo has been accepted for carriage until the moment it has been given to the consignee.

II. General provisions

1. These Regulations define the legal status of the freight forwarder, types and procedure of his activities, according to which the forwarding services are allowed to take place.
2. Legal relationships created when performing forwarding services are determined by these Regulations, other laws and regulations as well as international conventions binding on Latvia.
3. If stipulated otherwise in the international conventions binding on Latvia than in these Regulations, the provisions of international conventions are applied in such cases.
4. The forwarder pursuant to agreements signed with the consignor, carrier and other persons involved in transport procedure, provides to the consigner the forwarding services related to delivery of cargo with one or several means of transport and management of transport process (freight storage, reloading, loading, insurance, grouping of small cargoes, settlement of payment operations, handling of customs formalities, demand of acts, if breaches have been established in carriage, participation in execution of acts on behalf of the consignor or consignee, as well as lodging of complaints and claims on behalf of the consignor).
5. The forwarder is considered to be a carrier, if the freight is carried with a means of transport owned by him or in his legal possession. In such case the forwarder obtains reception rights, obligations and responsibility of the carrier.>
6. The forwarder assumes the liabilities of a carrier in the following cases:
6.1 If he undertakes to carry the freight and perform related forwarding services in the forwarding contract;
6.2 If the forwarder is indicated in the consignment note of freight as the carrier.
7. In order to provide the forwarding services, the forwarder needs a certificate issued by the commission approved by the Ministry of Transport, and consisting of representatives from the Latvian Association of freight forwarders and logistics, Latvian Association of Transit Business, Technical University of Latvia and the State Revenue Service. The procedure by which the certificates are issued is defined by the Ministry of Transport. No state duty is charged on issuance of the certificate.

III. Forwarding contract

8. In the forwarding contract the forwarder undertakes to organise freight delivery upon the consignor's order and to provide other services related to the transport process, and the consignor undertakes to pay the agreed charge.
9. The consignor makes the order verbally or in writing. An order subject to excise tax payment or to transport of dangerous goods can be made only in a written form.
10. The order must contain all information necessary for its execution, including information about the cargo to be transported and stored at special conditions and in need of a special equipment or servicing. If a cargo, which may cause losses to other goods, animals or persons, and is perishable, is given for transporting without a special warning, the consignor undertakes responsibility for the damage caused.
11. The forwarder is not obliged to check the content, weight, sizes and value of a cargo or containers, but if the forwarder is in doubts, he must consult with the consignor and eliminate uncertainty, unless stipulated otherwise in the contract.
12. Possession of the cargo by the forwarder is supported by the consignment documents of the freight, which are determined in the laws and regulations governing corresponding types of transport.
13. The forwarder is not responsible for the content of the freight accepted for forwarding, unless stipulated otherwise in the contract.
14. The consignor is responsible for loading of the cargo in the initial location, and the consignor is responsible for unloading of cargo in the destination, unless stipulated otherwise in the contract.
15. The forwarder insures the cargo only if the consignor has submitted a written application thereof and insurance costs are borne by the consignor, or if it is stipulated in the forwarding contract.
16. The consignor must reimburse the costs incurred on the forwarder due to the cargo insurance.
17. If the consignee fails to receive the delivered cargo or the cargo has been detained during the carriage for reasons beyond control of the forwarder, it is stored at the expense and responsibility of the consignor. The forwarder must immediately notify the consignor and insurer of the cargo thereof, if the forwarder has arranged the insurance.
18. If the consignee has failed to receive the delivered cargo within 60 days (pertains to inland carriage) or within 90 days (pertains to carriage outside Latvia) since the day the consignee was informed about delivery of the freight, the forwarder obtains the rights stipulated under Article 25 of these regulations.
19. If the consignor has failed to perform the obligations under the forwarding contract and laws and regulations in a duly manner during the performance term of the forwarding contract, he reimburses the incurred loss as well as pays a contractual penalty if the parties have agreed on such.
20. The consignor is responsible also for the losses incurred in the following cases:
20.1 If the cargo packaging does not comply with the properties of the cargo to be transported;
20.2 If the information about the cargo to be carried according to special conditions is incorrect, inaccurate or insufficient;
20.3 If the supporting documents of the cargo have been executed incompletely or incorrectly.
21. If the forwarder has failed to perform the obligations under the forwarding contract and laws and regulations in a duly manner during the performance term of the forwarding contract, he reimburses the incurred loss as well as pays a contractual penalty if the parties have agreed on such.
22. If the forwarder has employed a subforwarder to execute the order, he must comply with the rights of the forwarder. Claims and rights of the forwarder to detain and sell the cargo are assigned to the subforwarder if he satisfies the forwarder's claims regarding the payment for performance of the contract.
23. If losses have been incurred due to subforwarder, the forwarder undertakes the responsibility thereof. After recovery of loses the forwarder may lodge a claim of recovery against the subforwarder.
24. If the consignor has failed to pay for the services provided by the forwarder within 60 days (for inland carriage) or 90 days (for carriage outside Latvia) since the day the order had to be executed, the forwarder is entitled to sell the cargo given to him for forwarding.
25. The forwarder is entitled to detain and sell the cargoes in his actual possession at the price corresponding to certain conditions, and to an extent to cover the forwarding services, reimburse costs and expenses related to forwarding services as well as advance payments made by the forwarder to other persons to execute the contract.
26. Payments for the forwarding services are settled by the consignor on the basis of the invoices submitted by the forwarder. The invoice for the forwarding services is submitted and paid according to the procedure under the laws and regulations unless stipulated otherwise in the contract.
27. If the forwarder submits respective evidence the consignor must compensate also other expenses created in the process of carriage, related to:
27.1 If the payments for customs and other items increase;
27.2 Standstill beyond control of the forwarder;
27.3 Incompletely or wrongly executed freight documents;
27.4 Recovery of loss according to the insurance agreement.
28. If the consignor has given instructions to the forwarder to collect payments form the consignee or other person for delivery of the cargo and for other services, but the person in question refuses to make said payments, the consignor will be held liable.
29. When the forwarder makes settlements with the consignor, he does not have to cover the loss related to currency exchange fluctuations.
30. The limitation period for claims against the forwarder in case of a lost cargo, loss or damage, as well as delay of cargo delivery is one year. All other claims has three years’ limitation term.
31. Limitation period for damage or loss of the cargo starts the next day after cargo delivery, but in case of the loss of cargo or delivery .

IV. Transitional provisions

32. These provisions come in force as of 1 May 1996.

Prime Minister M.Gailis

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