Home > Freight Glossary > Power Of Attorney (POA)

What is a power of attorney in shipping?

A Power of Attorney (POA) in shipping is a legal instrument that grants authority to an individual or entity to act on behalf of another party in shipping-related matters. It allows the appointed representative to perform tasks such as signing documents, making decisions, and conducting transactions related to export shipments, international shipping, or shipping vehicles.

When do you need a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney for shipping becomes necessary when the principal (shipper or exporter) is unable to personally handle shipping-related tasks or transactions. This could be due to various reasons, such as geographical distance, time constraints, or the need for specialized expertise in international shipping regulations.

How does it work?

Once a Power of Attorney is established, the appointed representative gains the legal authority to act on behalf of the principal in shipping matters. This includes signing shipping documents, such as bills of lading and customs declarations, authorizing the release of goods, and making decisions related to cargo handling and transportation.

Requirements and documentation

To create a Power of Attorney for shipping, the principal typically needs to complete a specific POA form or document. This document should clearly outline the powers granted to the representative, the duration of the authority, and any limitations or restrictions imposed. Additionally, the POA may require notarization or witnesses to ensure its validity.

Who can sign a shipping POA?

The principal, who is the owner of the goods or the party responsible for shipping, is the one authorized to sign a shipping Power of Attorney. This ensures that the appointed representative acts in accordance with the principal's wishes and interests, safeguarding their rights and interests in shipping transactions.

How do you get a POA?

Obtaining a Power of Attorney for shipping involves completing a POA form or document tailored to shipping requirements. These forms may be available from shipping companies, freight forwarders, or legal professionals specializing in shipping law. Additionally, customizable shipping Power of Attorney templates can be found online, which can be adapted to suit specific needs and preferences. Once completed, the POA must be signed and, in some cases, notarized to be legally effective in shipping transactions.