House Bill Of Lading (HBL) & Bill Of Lading (BL) [Explained]

If you want to know what is house bill of lading (HBL) is and what is the difference between the house bill of lading (HBL) & the bill of lading (BL).

You are on the right page!

Here in this article, I explained everything you need to know about the bill of landing.


Hello, friends welcome to another fresh article of “Indiancustoms.info”. Here in this article, I explained what is a bill of landing is and how does it work.

I also cover what is the difference between BL and HBL?

If you are working in the import-export industry, It very important for you to understand what is BL, MB, and HBL.

Because it is a very important document, without this document you can’t import or export your goods via sea.

So, read this article carefully, I hope after reading this complete article, you will understand everything about the bill of landing.

Bill Of Landing

What Is Bill Of Landing?

A Bill of lading is like a bill that is issued by a shipping line or carrier of goods as a receipt of cargo.

Bill of lading is issued to the exporter after completion of the export customs clearance process and handover cargo to the carrier.

BL is generally issued in triplicate with non-negotiable copies, BL also is issued in quintuplicate on special request by exporters.

Once when exporters get an original bill of lading from the shipping line or carrier, they submit all documents in his bank along with BL and the bank sends all these documents to the importer through the importer’s bank.

After making the payment, the importer collects all documents from his and arranges import customs clearance.

An exporter can also surrender the original bill of lading at the destination port and ask them to release cargo without insisting original bill of lading.

I hope now you understand what is a bill of lading (BL), now let’s take a look at what is house bill of lading (HBL)?

House Bill of Lading

What is House Bill of Lading (HBL)?

House bill of lading (HBL) is issued by a freight forwarder when they collect or receive shipments from an exporter at the destination.

The freight forwarder acts as a carrier, the freight forwarder collects cargo from the exporter and delivers it to the importer.

Let’s understand this scenario with an example:-

If Mr.X from India wants to export goods to Mr.Y in Dubai and Mr.A from India wants to export goods to Mr.B in Dubai.

Mr.X and Mr.A both contact freight forwarder Mr.Gashik to export goods to Dubai.

Mr.Gashik collects cargo and issues 2 different HBL from both of them as proof of recipients of cargo and handover cargo to carriers under the single bill of lading (BL).

For a carrier, it is a single shipment but for freight forwarders, it is 2 different shipments of the different exporters.

Bill of landing is issued by the carrier to exporter but when freight forwarder or consolidator involved is a shipment carrier issues bill of lading to a freight forwarder or consolidator.

The BL issued to a freight forwarder by the carrier is known as Master bill of lading or MBL and the BL issued to the exporter by the freight forwarder is known as House bill of lading or HBL.

I hope now you understand what is the difference between bill of lading and house bill of lading (HBL), still you have any query please ask in the comment box.

Procedures To Surrender House Bill Of Lading (HBL).

Procedures To Surrender House Bill Of Lading (HBL).

Surrendering BL is helps to expedite and simplify the cargo release process of the final destination.

Let’s take a look at how the BL surrender process works!

After completion of the export customs clearance process freight forwarder hand over the cargo to the carrier.

Once when carrier device cargo they issue the bill of lading to the forwarding agent as proof of acceptance of cargo.

Exporter surrender the original bill of lading at the destination port along with a request letter to release cargo at the final port without the original bill of landing and make the BL surrender charges and telex released.

If you want to know which charges the exporter will pay on his behalf check out Incoterms 2020.

When exporter surrender BL at exporter side counterpart, Exporter side counterpart informs Importer side counterpart to release DO without collecting original BL.

After surrendering BL, the exporter sends a copy of BL to the importer instead of the original BL.

With the help of a copy of BL, importers can get DO from their counterparts and release the shipment without any delay.

I hope now you understand how BL surrender process work and how it helps to simplify the export-import process.

House Bill Of Lading Amendment Procedures And Formalities.

House Bill Of Lading Amendment Procedures And Formalities.

Here we discuss house bill of lading amendment procedures and formalities in 2 different scenarios.

  • Before submission of HBL at the bank.
  • After submission of HBL at the bank.

The amendment procedure and formalities are different in both scenarios.

As we already discussed in this article, HBL is issued by the freight forwarder or consolidator as proof of receipt of cargo from the exporter.

So, If the discrepancy in the House Bill of lading is found before submitting documents with the exporter’s bank.

The freight forwarder can be done amendments in house bill of lading based on original export documents which are used to do the customs clearance of shipment.

If the correction details are not matched with the documents used to do the customs clearance of the shipment.

Then the carrier or freight forwarder doesn’t have the authority to add these details to HBL without amendment of export documents with customs.

Once the amendment is done customs documents like shipping bills, forwarder or carrier can amend house bill of lading accordingly.

I hope now you understand the procedure to amend the house bill of lading if it’s not submitted to the bank by the exporter.

Now let’s take look at the second scenario.

If the discrepancy is found after submitting documents at the bank by the importer, then the freight forwarder of the origin port is not able to amend HBL.

In this situation, the importer needs to approach the final destination counterpart to amend HBL with the No objection letter from the freight forwarder of origin.

After getting NOC from the origin, the counterpart of the final destination amends the house bill of lading accordingly.

I hope now you understand the procedure and formalities to amend the house bill of landing, still, you have any query please ask in the comment box.

If you found this article helpful to others then don’t forget to share this article on your social media profile.

I hope this article helps you to understand what is Bill of landing, Master bill of lading, and House bill of lading are and what are the differences between them. If anyone has any suggestions or queries please comment in the comment box.

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