How to sue a broker for illegitimate claim?

Discussion in 'Freight Broker Forum' started by adreanis, May 8, 2013.

  1. adreanis

    adreanis Bobtail Member

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    I own my authority and equipment, do my own dispatch and accounting. One of my drivers had a claim on raw chicken hauled in bulk from GA to IL. They charged us 500lbs of chicken plus cleanup. They send us after one month, 2 blurry pictures of one pallet leaning on side not perforated and a handwritten statement from receiver. They said that USDA condemned and destroyed the product but they don't have any USDA certificate or documentation. Do I have grounds to sue them in small claims court? Do I need a lawyer?
     
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  3. mtp

    mtp Bobtail Member

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    Play hardball with them...give them the ball back and demand they show proof that 1) it was from your shipment 2) the usda document condemning the product 3) clear photographs with shipper consignee and shipment #s readable. and state in your letter...If these items are not received within 14 business days claim will be invalid. see if that works. what kind of dollar amount are they claiming anyway ?
     
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  4. G/MAN

    G/MAN Road Train Member

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    I write on any contracts that any claims must be made at the time of delivery in order to be valid. You need to protect yourself. Filing a claim after the fact, there is no way to know for sure that the damaged goods were on your truck or that there was even damage. Just because a pallet falls over, doesn't necessarily mean that it the fault of the driver or carrier, either. You can file on their bond or file in small claims court. It will be up to the broker to prove that there was actually a claim and that your driver was responsible.
     
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  5. wichris

    wichris Road Train Member

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    Under FMCSA reg's they have nine months to file a claim. Regardless of what you put on a rate confirmation/broker package.
     
  6. G/MAN

    G/MAN Road Train Member

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    If there is a legitimate claim, there is NO reason that the claim cannot be made at the time of delivery. Any damage should be noted on the bill of lading at the time of delivery. Anything can happen once the freight is off the truck. If nothing is noted on the bills at the time of delivery, then the claim has little validity. I would fight any claim that was made without a notation on the bills at the time of delivery. Without a notation on the original bills at the time of delivery, any claim would have little chance of meeting the burden of proof, should it come to going to court.
     
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  7. mcgoo422000

    mcgoo422000 Medium Load Member

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    I was talking with a broker a couple weeks ago he said same thing shipper tried to make a claim months later went nowhere cause BOL was signed clean.
     
  8. wichris

    wichris Road Train Member

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    Might read up on the Carmack amendment.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2013
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  9. VisionLogistics

    VisionLogistics Road Train Member

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    Good idea. What's the actual language you use? If you include it on contracts from brokers, too, do you just write it in and have them acknowledge?
     
  10. windsmith

    windsmith Road Train Member

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    You mean the Carmack Amendment?
     
  11. wichris

    wichris Road Train Member

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