International Shipping and Haulage

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International Shipping and Haulage

Juggling road transport legal responsibilities while pursuing your commercial objectives is difficult. The solicitors at JMW understand the risks and challenges that haulage businesses face when it comes to shipping internationally, which is why we provide proactive, commercially-focused advice to businesses operating in the transport industry.

We are recognised for our knowledge and experience in logistics and transport matters to ensure your business operations are not halted or delayed.

To speak to a solicitor about international shipping and haulage, contact JMW today by calling 0345 872 6666. Alternatively, complete our online enquiry form and a member of the team will give you a call back at a convenient time.

How JMW Can Help

JMW’s road transport solicitors provide both businesses and individuals with clear, easy-to-understand legal advice on the complexities of international shipping and haulage. We provide legal advice, defence and representation to operators of a wide range of goods and passenger vehicles.

Our international shipping and haulage services include:

  • Licence applications, renewals, changes and appeals
  • Document checking to ensure requirements are met

International Shipping and Haulage Responsibilities

Over the last few years, the landscape for international goods movement has changed drastically in terms of document requirements. This has not only had a major impact on traders and exporters, but also on international haulage operators who have found themselves required to ensure that their drivers hold the appropriate paperwork, including documents that should have been provided by their customers.

For Traders

One of the key changes to the responsibilities of traders is ensuring that where goods are going to one of the EU Member States, the appropriate customs requirements are completed with the correct information. Otherwise, these traders will find their goods trapped in limbo between two customs territories, or simply stuck at the border.

The starting point for any goods movement is the export declaration. This was originally done by completing a form called the Single Administrative Document (SAD); however, exporters are now encouraged (and pushed) to use the online systems, primarily the online Customs Declaration System (CDS), to complete these declarations.

Completion of these declarations using the CDS will generate a reference number called the Movement Reference Number (MRN). To complete an export declaration, you will need a GB EORI Number (Economic Operator Registration and Identification Number).

It is vital that traders using the CDS or any other online declaration system (particularly if they are sending goods in transit) communicate any reference numbers to the haulage company if they are using a third-party haulier, or to their driver if they do their transport in-house.

For Hauliers

Goods vehicle operators who want to carry goods internationally into the EU will need to hold an international operator’s licence as issued by the Traffic Commissioner and UK Licence for the Community, which should come with that operator’s licence. This allows those operators access to the EU haulage market, although it does place some restrictions on the amount of cabotage and cross-trade those hauliers are permitted to carry out. Please do keep in mind that the rules in respect of the Republic of Ireland are slightly different. 

As well as displaying the relevant licence discs, vehicles travelling internationally will need to also carry their registration documents and have a ‘UK’ identifier.

In addition to the above, haulier must make sure that they have access to the Goods Vehicles Movement Service (GVMS) and the GB Safety and Security declaration service, which allows them to tie the customs information given to them by their customer to their vehicle registration number and allows them to complete any relevant safety and security declarations.

Evidently, the haulier and their driver have an important role in the export process that needs to be recognised.

For Drivers

Drivers are arguably the most important cog in the whole machine when it comes to international goods movement. They must complete certain stages at the port or border to enable the movement to be successful, such as making the correct safety and security declarations and/or showing the right people the appropriate paperwork.

It is also important that the driver has the correct qualifications to carry the goods and drive the vehicle in question. One such qualification is the all-important Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) and making sure that they have a correctly issued CPC qualification. Drivers will also need to ensure that they have a passport that is valid to travel to the EU, as well as make sure they do not breach the terms of any visas.

Talk to Us

Speak to the road transport solicitors at JMW today to find out more about how we can help you and your business. Simply call us on 0345 872 6666, or complete our online enquiry form and a member of the team will give you a call back at a convenient time.