USDA Grain Transportation Report (12/15): FMC Introduces Interim Procedures For Processing Charge Complaints

According to today's USDA Grain Transportation Report, on December 1, the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) announced its interim procedures to review, investigate, and adjudicate shippers’ complaints of unfair charges by common carriers.

According to FMC, “U.S. shippers have responded positively to the new opportunity.” FMC has received more than 175 filings since June when the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 (OSRA) was enacted. (OSRA mandated the new procedures.)

Per the interim procedures, when a charge complaint is deemed “perfected” with sufficient information, FMC staff promptly investigates it.

In cases where charges are found not to comply with the law, FMC will order a refund or waiver. FMC may then also initiate a separate civil penalty proceeding with its Administrative Law Judge.

For cases in which an initial charge complaint is not referred to FMC’s Office of Enforcement, the interim procedures outline several other possible recourses for shippers.

Read the full report here.