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Trade Advice

Surrender Bill of Lading (BL) in shipping

08/01/2021 3 Min Read

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For completion of each process, an official closure and its documentary equivalent is a must. The shipping business is no different. The standard or generic bill of lading [Read here to know what is a bill of lading] is an intimation about receiving of goods and the quality of goods by the shipper. It aids the shipper to hold ownership of the goods during the transit. Once the voyage is completed, the ownership of the goods is transferred to the importer who is receiving them.

What is Surrender BL?

Surrender BL is a legal document issued by the exporters to terminate their ownership over the sent goods and transfer it to the importer.

Why is Surrender BL important?

Why Surrender Bill of lading BL important

When the importer has completed the payment of the goods, the exporter gives up his rights over the sent goods and cannot reclaim the ownership. Surrender BL is necessary for the transfer of ownership of goods.

How a Surrender bill of lading (BL) works?

The exporter can hold the bill of lading and legally own the goods until the importer has not made the payment. Bill of lading is aligned to payment terms allowing the exporter and the importer to complete the transaction with their local banks' assistance. On the exporter's behalf, his local bank submits the terms of payment and documentation to the importer's bank. The importer makes the payment for the goods and the exporter then surrenders and transfers the good's ownership to the importer. This process is both safe and convenient.

However, the exporter should ensure that the payment is completed before surrendering the bill. If the importer receives the surrendered BL before completing the payment and claims ownership of the goods, the exporter might not get paid. To sum it up, it is safe to say that this transaction is a better option when an exporter has a trustworthy relation with the importer.

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An example of the surrender bill

Surrender Bill of Lading Example

The exporter sends the goods to the shipper. The shipper examines the goods and issues a Bill of Lading as a receipt of goods that can prove his legal ownership over goods during the transit. The carrier reaches the destination. The importer has to pay for the goods to the exporter after the bill is surrendered. Ownership over the goods is transferred to the importer and he has to complete the procedure depending on the shipping container type for the release of goods and claim ownership.

Surrender BL-Letter Format

An example of letter format for surrender bill of lading

Surrender BL - Letter Format

Difference between Surrender BL, Telex release BL, Seaway bill, Express BL, Original BL

Surrender bill of lading Difference

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Avani Ghangurde

Associate Communications at Drip Capital

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