Throughout the Yellowfin website you will see it repeatedly mentioned how we actively encourage all prospective Shippers to familiarize themselves with the Auto Shipping process. In this way, they are able to align their expectations with the atypical way this industry operates.
We would also encourage you to explore your basic rights and responsibilities before, during and after the transportation of your vehicle.
A Shipper’s Responsibilities
As a Shipper, you have responsibilities both to your Broker/Carrier and yourself. These include:
- Reading all documents issued by the Broker or Carrier
- Being available telephonically throughout the process or, at the very least, prompt at returning calls, responding to emails and texts
- Preparing your vehicle for transportation in accordance with the guidelines provided to you
- Inform your Shipping Advisor / Carrier of any custom modifications to your vehicle (i.e. a ground clearance of less than 4-inches, add-ons that make your vehicle wider, longer or higher than standard specifications)
- Being available at the time of pickup and delivery of your shipment. If you are not available you should appoint a representative to act on your behalf
- Promptly notifying your mover if anything has changed with your shipment (i.e. transport dates, additional items)
- Personally recording the condition of your vehicle before and after transport (logging any damage in the Bill of Lading prior to signing)
- Making payment in the amount required and in the form agreed to with the Carrier
- Prompt filing of claims for loss, damage or delays with your Carrier, where appropriate
A Shipper’s Rights
Verifying Company Licensing and Insurance
Prior to signing up with a transporter, it is your right to request verification of the their licensing and insurance information. A verification portal is made available to the public through the FMCSA. To obtain these details, you would require the company’s USDOT Number or Docket Number. Reputable companies should have this displayed directly on their website or have it readily available should you request it. Go here and add the numbers into the search field to complete your request.
Seek Dispute Resolution with your Carrier
You have a legal right to seek resolution for any loss, damage and/or charge disputes directly with your Carrier. As you are bound by a contractual agreement with your Transporter, your resolution request must be supported by:
- The Terms and Conditions you agreed to before your transport
- The terms you accepted when signing the Bill of Lading
- Any special terms you approved when signing for the delivery of your shipment (which should be recorded in writing)
Lay Claim for Damages
As you vehicle is insured with the Carrier, you can file a legitimate claim for damages with your Carrier’s insurer. All documentation required for claims can be provided to you by your Broker. If you did not work through a Broker, you would need to obtain a copy of your Carrier’s insurance certificate and your Bill of Lading.
Pursue Civil Action
You may choose to pursue a civil action should a Carrier fail to cooperate with legitimate claims for damages. You can initiate this action by filing a claim in your State and serving the papers on the Carrier’s Process Agent in that State. Contact the FMCSA at (866) 637-0635 to obtain your Carrier’s Process Agent information. Alternatively, you may obtain the name of a Process Agent by following these instructions:
- Go here
- Click CONTINUE at the bottom of the page
- Click on CHOOSE MENU OPTION. Select CARRIER SEARCH in the drop-down menu. Then press GO
- Enter the USDOT or MC number for the Carrier
- Click on HTML
- At the bottom of the page you will see BLANKET COMPANY; click on the link
- You will be presented with a list of Process Agents by State. Find the Process Agent listed for your State