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In recent months, we have seen a great deal of turnover in personnel at both our client and carrier ends. Whether due to retirements, promotions, changes of careers, etc., we find ourselves in a position of re-educating newcomers on the basics of freight overcharge recovery. School may be out for the summer, but it is an exciting opportunity to revisit some of the fundamentals with regard to the legal basis for what we do.

The recovery of overcharges for truck freight is governed by Title 49, CFR, Part 378, Procedures Governing the Processing, Investigation, and Disposition of Overcharge, Duplicate Payment, or Overcollection Claims. As the title implies, this provision covers the processing of claims for the transportation of property in interstate or foreign commerce by motor carriers and household goods freight forwarders subject to 49 U.S. Code Subtitle IV, Part B. When shippers partner with carriers that participate in the National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC), they can find provisions regarding overcharge claims processes in Items 300300-300380.

For rail freight commodities such as wheat, soybeans and various food products still regulated by the government, the recovery of overcharges for rail freight moving under public rates is governed by

US Code, Title 49, 11705, Limitations on Actions By and Against Rail Carriers. For exempt commodities or products moving under contracted pricing, overcharges and associated time limits are outlined in the carrier’s rules tariffs or noted in the confidential documents entered into by shippers and the various railroads.

With such laws and contracts as an underpinning, AMTR serves our shipper clients as a duly authorized agent to process requests with carriers for overcharges, regardless of nature. Even though we do advocate for shippers, we take seriously our mission to partner with carriers—rail or truck—to ensure shippers get the customer experience they deserve.

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