Coastwise Option

Coastwise Option

Summary of Coastwise Option

A provision of the carriage OF GOODS BY SEA ACT (read this and related legal terms for further details) (COGSA) which permits COGSA to be incorporated into bills of lading covering shipments in the domestic maritime commerce of the United States. Most shipments in the foreign waterborne commerce of the United States are automatically subject to COGSA. Excepted from the purview of the act are shipments in bulk without mark or count, on-deck shipments at shipper’s risk, and shipments of live animals. In the case of domestic waterborne shipments, COGSA will apply only if the act is incorporated by reference into the bill of lading. Where the coastwise option has not been exercised on domestic shipments, questions of carrier liability will be governed by the HARTER ACT (read this and related legal terms for further details), and other relevant legislation.

(Main Author: William J. Miller)



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