Freight Claim FAQ: If I File the Freight Claim, Who Claims the Freight?

Question: When I file a freight claim against a carrier, and they pay the claim, do they have a right to take my damaged freight?

The carrier doesn’t have a right to take your damaged freight. As a carrier, they must reimburse you for any damages that your freight incurred on its journey, but that doesn’t mean that it’s theirs for the taking.

What if the damaged freight has salvage value?

If the freight has any salvage value, this should be expressed in the amount of the freight claim that you file against the carrier. If the freight is not completely damaged, but could be repaired or sold as a “second”, then the carrier should not need to pay for the entire value of the shipment. The carrier is not buying your product – in essence, he is “buying” the damages to your product.

File Your Freight Claim & Claim Your Freight

While it may seem harmless to hand over your damaged freight for the carrier to process or dispose of, be cautious. Consider the potential consequences if the carrier does not dispose of it:

  • Resold, salvaged product will not have the same quality as your other goods – if your products are branded in any way, this may damage your reputation.
  • If you have a food or drug product that is no longer fit for consumption and it is put back on the market, it puts lives at risk – not to mention you could be liable.
  • Damaged non-food products may also pose safety risks to users.

What You Should Do When Filing Your Freight Claim

  • If the freight has any salvage value, reduce the amount of your transportation freight claim accordingly. In this case, you aren’t entitled to claim the full value of the shipment…whether you salvage it or not.
  • Allow the carrier the opportunity to inspect the damaged freight.
  • If the shipment is not salvageable and you dispose of the product, you may need to supply the carrier with proof of disposal.

Disclaimer: The information on this blog is for personal reference only. This is not official legal advice. We accept no responsibility for consequences resulting from the use of this information. For official legal advice, talk to a certified professional.