What type of notice will I get from the driver?
You should expect to get a phone call from the carrier and/or driver confirming the price to be paid at delivery and a rough estimate of when they will be arriving. In this phone call, you will want to confirm the type of payment they expect (cash, credit, certified or personal check) and all the services you expect to be provided. Make sure to mention any items that will need to be assembled and the time frame in which they expect to have all of the work completed.
When to expect delivery?
Federal regulations require carriers to deliver goods with “reasonable dispatch,” but the term is largely undefined. While there is no hard and fast definition of “reasonable dispatch,” you can generally expect delivery 21 business days or 30 calendar days from the first available delivery date of delivery.
What is FAD (first available date of delivery)?
The first available date of delivery is also referred to as the FAD, which is a day that establishes when the delivery window will begin. The first available date should be established at the time of estimate creation or at the time the Bill of Lading is filled out and signed at loading. This date is the first day that you will be available to receive your goods at your new location. The delivery window is the length of time the carrier has to deliver the goods. In many situations, this window is listed on the Bill of Lading.
A common misconception is that the first available date of delivery is the date that the items will arrive. This is not the case, unless you have explicitly paid for the items to arrive on a certain day. This charge will need to be listed as a separate and distinct charge on the Bill of Lading.
To determine your first available date of delivery and the delivery window, look at the Bill of Lading. There should be a space in the top right corner for the first available delivery date. The delivery window will typically be found in the Terms and Conditions. These two pieces of information will tell you when you should be expecting to receive delivery.
What if I can’t make the time given by the driver work to receive my goods?
The carrier has the right to deliver at any reasonable time within the delivery window and the expectation is that you will be available to receive your goods through the delivery window. If you refuse to accept at the provided time, the driver can charge a redelivery fee or place items into storage. An extra charge will likely be added for a rescheduled delivery.
If you cannot personally be there, you may send a representative. If you do send a representative, you should be aware that you will be bound by what that representative agrees to on your behalf.
Do I have to pay before they will unload my truck?
Yes. The driver can demand payment before unloading the truck.
What form of payment will they expect?
A legitimate carrier will allow you to make payment in any form that was agreed to in the original estimate.
Fraudulent entities will require you to pay in cash or by a certified check. The reason is that they do not want you to be able to dispute or cancel the payment once everything is delivered.
What should I be doing during the unloading process?
You should be directing the unloading team as to where to place the items and noting what items are being unloading. To make this easy, the best method is to use the original inventory sheets and check off items as they come in the front door.
You are NOT required to assist the team in unloading or to provide any help. This is a service that you have paid for and a service the team has been trained to perform.
What if I feel unsafe having the driver and crew unload when I am by myself?
Contact local authorities and ask for an officer to be there for your safety. This is a civil matter, so they cannot get involved in deciding any monetary disputes, but they can be there for your safety.