Updated at: 08-09-2021 - By: Lucas

A bill of lading is an international shipping document. It is used to ship goods by sea between countries with different customs regulations. The bill of lading tells the receiving country what the contents of the package are and shows the sender is responsible for making sure the package gets delivered. 

There are many different types of bills of lading depending on the shipment. Each country has its own requirements and the type of bill of lading required will depend on the destination country. Here are some of the most common types of bills of lading:

Clean Bill of Lading

Clean Bill of Lading

A clean bill of lading is one that has been prepared by a freight forwarder or broker. It gives the recipient of your cargo a receipt that they can give to their insurance company or other third parties. A clean bill of lading helps you avoid having your cargo lost or damaged in transit. It also prevents your cargo from being seized by government agencies.

A clean bill of lading will be much more valuable to you if there are any claims or lawsuits filed against the shipping company. That way, you can show the court or jury the official document that proves the cargo was delivered in good condition. This will go a long way in your favor when trying to win such cases.

Through Bill of Lading


A through bill of lading is an official document used when you ship something by sea. It gives details about your shipment such as the name of the shipper, the name of the receiver, the quantity, the value, the nature of the goods being shipped, and other information.

Through bills of lading are important because they are required by law if you want to get a refund on any part of your shipment. Without one, you are not entitled to a refund. You should always ask for one when you are sending a package by sea. If the person you are sending it to doesn’t have a copy of the bill of lading, he can’t make a claim for a refund. So make sure you get him a copy!

Claused Bill of Lading

A claused bill of lading is a shipping document which describes the contents of a container with greater detail than a waybills. The information on a claussed bill of lading includes the quantity and kind of each commodity being shipped; the names and addresses of the shipper and the consignee; the nature of the shipment (for example, goods carried under one or more bills of lading); the number of packages or bundles; the container number and the type of container used; and other details.

A claussed bill of lading is required when the contents of a container are not described in a waybill. For example, if the bill of lading does not describe the commodities being shipped in sufficient detail to identify them, or if there are several different kinds of commodities being shipped, a claussed bill of lading is needed. In this case, the consignee must be informed of the exact nature of the shipment.

Container Bill of Lading


A container bill of lading is a legal document that details what was shipped in a container. It contains the information about the shipper, the receiver, the date and time the container was put on the ship, the port of origin and destination, and the quantity of whatever was being shipped. The bill of lading also has a section that details what was inside the container. This section is called the “bill of lading” because it describes the contents.

A container bill of lading is important for a couple reasons: One, it verifies that you have actually delivered the items to the person or company to whom you sent them. Two, it lets you know what was inside the container so you can track your goods.

House Bill of Lading


A house bill of lading (HBL) is a document that is issued by a carrier when it has accepted goods for shipment and has given a receipt for those goods. The HBL is signed by both the shipper and the carrier. 

The HBL serves as a receipt for the carrier and a document that proves the carrier received the goods. The HBL also serves as an acknowledgement the carrier will be responsible for any damage to or loss of the goods while in its care.

The HBL is usually used as evidence in the event of a claim against the carrier. Carriers will use the HBL as an admission of receipt and sometimes as an evidence the goods were in good condition when they were shipped. 

The HBL will also serve as an important document when you are doing business with a new or smaller company. The HBL can help you avoid disputes and problems when you are working with a smaller company because it will give them an official record of receiving the goods. The HBL is not a negotiable instrument.

Master Bill of Lading

Master Bill of Lading

A master bill of lading is a form that is often used by freight forwarders when they are processing an international shipment. It is basically an abbreviated version of the bill of lading that is used for domestic shipments. 

The abbreviation is caused by the fact that the vast majority of international shipments are shipped by sea, which means that the vast majority of bills of lading are not signed by the carrier.

A master bill of lading will have all of the same information as a full blown bill of lading, but it will be much shorter. This allows the freight forwarder to get the shipment processed much faster. It also allows them to get paid faster by their client. A master bill of lading should be completed and attached to the first package of each shipment. This will alert the receiving party that there is more to come.

Charter Party Bill of Lading

Charter Party Bill of Lading

A charter party bill of lading is a legal document that is issued when you ship a boat or other watercraft. It is also known as a C.P. Bill. This type of bill of lading is usually required by the charter company when they are issuing a charter for a boat they do not own. 

A CP bill of lading is basically an insurance document that details what you are transporting. It also states what type of cargo you are transporting, as well as the value of that cargo.

It is important to have this type of bill of lading when you are shipping anything that has a value. For example, if you are transporting fine wine, you should make sure you have a charter party bill of lading. 

Without one, the customs people will classify your cargo as “goods” and not “merchandise” and therefore, they will not charge you any import duties or taxes. With one, the cargo is classified as “merchandise” and you will be charged all applicable import duties and taxes.

Short-term/ Blank Back Bill of Lading


A blank back bill of lading is a document that is printed by the carrier and received by the shipper with no identifying information whatsoever. It is a “clean” bill of lading that identifies only the carrier (the name of the company) and the shipping date. 

A blank bill of lading is usually issued when the consignee or recipient does not have a license to receive or accept goods. For example, a carrier may deliver goods to a freight forwarder who then gives the goods to an end customer.

Blank bills of lading are used by freight forwarders, importers, exporters, government agencies and many others who do not have the legal right to possess or receive goods. In this case, the freight forwarder acts as an agent for the end customer and receives payment from the carrier. The freight forwarder then gives the money to the end customer.

Straight Bill of Lading

Straight Bill of Lading

A straight bill of lading is a form used to document the receipt of goods by a carrier. It has been superseded in many countries by the use of an air waybill, but it is still used in some countries for international shipments. 

The original purpose of the straight bill of lading was to allow the receiver of the goods to verify that the goods had been delivered to them in the condition stated when they were given to the shipper. This helps to ensure that the receiver is not liable for any reduction in value of the goods caused by the shipper.

The straight bill of lading has three sections. The first section is the header which contains the information about the shipment such as the description of the goods, the sender and the recipient and so on. The second section is the body of the bill which contains details about the actual goods received. 

This section usually consists of a receipt or a declaration page which states that the goods have been received in the same condition as when they were shipped. The final section is the footer which contains any additional information about the shipment.

Order Bill of Lading

Order Bill of Lading-2

An order bill of lading is a form used by shippers to request the carrier accept and acknowledge the receipt of goods. It is used in conjunction with a shipment receipt. The order bill of lading should be used when the shipper wants to make sure the carrier is holding the goods as agreed and the shipper wants to make sure the carrier has received the goods.

The order bill of lading must be used in conjunction with a shipment receipt. A shipment receipt is a document issued by the carrier to the shipper that acknowledges the receipt of the shipper’s goods by the carrier. It is used to confirm the carrier has the shipper’s goods.

Bearer Bill of Lading

A bearer bill of lading is a document that is issued in return for an import permit. It is filed with the Customs Department and serves as a receipt for the importer (you). The bearer bill of lading identifies you as the importer of record and it shows the quantity of merchandise that has been released for import into the United States. 

This document is filed in order to maintain your right to entry and it is used as evidence that you have paid all required duties, taxes and other charges associated with the importation of merchandise.

The bearer bill of lading is used to prove that you are allowed to bring the goods into the country and it is filed with the Customs Department as proof that you have paid all charges. In some cases, you may be required to file a “commercial invoice” instead of a bearer bill of lading. A commercial invoice is an invoice issued by a seller to an importer that is not a “permit holder”.

Surrender Bill of Lading


A surrender bill of lading is a legal document that is filed when one party (the shipper) surrenders control of their goods to another party (the carrier). It is used to show the consignee that the carrier has possession of the goods. 

A surrender bill of lading is different from a delivery receipt. A delivery receipt shows that the consignee received the goods, but it doesn’t show that the consignor surrendered control of the goods to the carrier.

A surrender bill of lading should be filed with the carrier’s office and it will be used as evidence that the carrier has possession of the goods. It will be filed in all cases where the consignee has given up possession of the goods to someone else. 

This could happen if the consignee sells the goods to someone else or gives them to a third party (like a charity). In any case, a consignee will not be held responsible for any loss or damage to the goods if they have done everything possible to give the carrier possession of the goods.


What Are Bill of Ladings Used For?

Bill of lading are used primarily for proof of ownership or proof of the contents of any covered commodity. They are also used to document the payment of freight charges, when applicable, for any shipment. 

Who Uses A Bill Of Lading?

The shipper and the consignee use a bill of lading. The shipper is the person who arranges for transportation of goods from one location to another. The consignee is the person who accepts the goods from the carrier.

In most cases, the shipper and the consignee are the same person or company. However, there are times when the shipper is not the person who ultimately takes possession of the goods.

What Is Contained In A Bill Of Lading?

A bill of lading is a document that has specific information about the goods that are being shipped.

Here is a list of the items typically included in a bill of lading: A reference number The name of the person or company who is the shipper (or consignor) The name of the person or company who is the consignee (or receiver) The quantity of each item being shipped The origin and destination of the shipment The type of transportation used (e.g., truck, railcar, boat, etc.

The physical description of the container (if any) The total weight of the shipment The nature of the shipment (i.e., whether it is merchandise, a service, a combination shipment, etc.) The terms of payment 

The signature of the person signing for the shipment The name of the shipping agent (if any) A statement that the contents of the shipment have been examined by an appropriate party and are in good condition The number of the receipt The amount of any additional charges 


A bill of lading is a document that gives details about the shipment of goods. In other words, it is a contract between the shipper (person who sends the goods) and the receiver (person who gets the goods).

This type of document is very important when you are sending or receiving any type of goods by ship. It is also important for the seller if he wants to send the goods to you by ship.

You should always try to get a bill of lading whenever you are buying or selling any type of goods by ship.