Not every shipment arrives in perfect condition. Any disputes or discrepancies can arise between you and freight forwarders. In such cases, you need an OS&D report to clear the real situation of your goods. Now let’s take a closer look.

What is over, Short & Damage (OS&D)?

OS&D is an abbreviation that stands for overage, short, and damage. These terms are used to describe discrepancies that can occur when shipping and receiving goods. All three pertain to the quantity of goods shipped or the quality they are in when delivered. They mainly mean

  • Overage: The received quantity of goods exceeds that specified on the bill of lading.
  • Shortage: The received quantity of goods is less than that specified on the bill of lading.
  • Damage: The quantity of goods is correct, but there is damage. Damage can be either externally visible or concealed internally.

OS&D inspection helps ensure the accuracy of orders. If there is a delivery error, it can be immediately detected and a claim can be raised. Additionally, in some cases, damage or loss of goods may involve legal liability and compliance issues. OS&D inspection can provide the necessary evidence and records to support legal requirements.

Common types of OS&D claims

Visibly damaged claim

This occurs when there is clear damage to the goods. For example, you purchase a batch of stockings and upon opening the package, you find noticeable tears, rips, or stains. In this case, it is also necessary to take a large number of photos to document the damage.

Concealed damage claim

The damage to the goods is not apparent. It can only be discovered after unpacking the inner packaging. Suppose you purchase a batch of televisions. It appears to be in perfect condition from the outside, but you only discover a cracked base after unpacking all of them. In such a situation, if you have already signed the bill of lading, it may be even more difficult to obtain compensation than for visible damage.

Regular and concealed shortage claim

Regular shortage refers to a quantity shortage that is easily noticeable, such as when you order 500 sweatshirts but only receive 450.

Concealed shortage refers to a shortage of goods that does not immediately draw attention. For example, you purchase 1000 screwdrivers, and you only discover a shortage of 5 when you are launching products. Concealed shortages are difficult to prove in claims due to the longer time period before discovery, and the compensation rate is also very low.

Loss claims

This refers to the possibility of the entire shipment being lost due to theft or similar reasons during transportation. Claims of this nature are typically easy to file. Carriers usually have a week to locate the lost goods, and if they cannot be found, compensation can be obtained quickly. Many people also choose cargo insurance to avoid this loss.

Refused shipment claims

If the goods are damaged, or incorrect, or there is a delay, they could be refused. In international shipping, since refusing acceptance can involve additional shipping costs and tariffs, you need to discuss with your supplier where the rejected goods should be sent.

2 key points in OS&D claims

When filing a claim, the following 2 points are worth noting.

Claim requirements

The BOL specifies all the detailed information about the goods, including the item names, quantity, price, etc. If the BOL matches the actual condition of the goods during inspection, you can sign the BOL to ensure the goods are in good condition. If there are discrepancies, you can note them on the bill of lading and then issue an OS&D report to file a claim.

OS&D report

It is a document filled out by the consignee upon receiving the shipment. This report provides a comprehensive account of any discrepancies in the received goods, such as damage or quantities differing from what is indicated in the BOL. Both the driver and shipping company receive a duplicate of the OS&D report for their records.

The report mainly includes the following information.

Basic product information, such as name, quantity, size, value, etc., should match the information on the bill of lading.

Shipping details, such as the name of the shipping company, vehicle number, driver information, and transportation route.

Delivery details. The report should include the date, time, and location of the goods’ delivery, as well as the signature of the recipient.

Problem description. The report should clearly describe any issues that have arisen, including whether the goods are over, shortage or damaged, as well as the nature and extent of the problems.

Supporting evidence. The report should include any evidence related to the issues, such as photos, videos, delivery receipts, packaging condition photos, etc.

Other relevant documents. Any documents related to the delivery of goods and the issues, such as packing lists, BOL, or transportation contracts, should also be included in the report.

Accuracy and detail are crucial when filling out an OS&D report, as they may affect subsequent remedial actions and legal responsibilities. Here is an example for your reference.

                                                       click to enlarge

In addition, the Carmack Amendment regulates some cases that the shipping company may not be responsible for compensation. They are natural disasters, war, government intervention, the shipper’s own breach of contract, or the nature of the goods themselves, such as when the transportation company has taken certain protective measures for perishable goods.

Claim deadline

Submitting a cargo claim is a process that requires prompt action. In most cases, you can file most types of cargo claims within 9 months after delivery. It is important not to delay, as the longer you wait, the harder it becomes to provide evidence, and the likelihood of receiving compensation decreases.

Please note that the deadline for concealed damage claims is 15 days after delivery, while refused shipment claims must be filed within 5 days.

The above are all post-processing procedures carried out. It not only consumes time and effort but may also affect your relationship with the supplier. Therefore, the best way to avoid this situation is to conduct a thorough goods inspection before they leave China.

Because whether it’s a large factory or a small one, quality issues can arise. By conducting quality inspections in China, you can promptly identify product issues, control defect rates, and ensure that the products you receive meet your quality requirements.

As a leading sourcing company in China, JingSourcing has helped 4000+ clients source and customize products from China. We also have a professional inspection team. Besides offering AQL sampling inspection, we provide more flexible inspection solutions according to your requirements. We can send you photos or videos during the inspection and communicate with you in real time.

In addition, we have cooperated with many freight forwarders for a long time who are experienced in dealing with different shipping situations. We can ship your goods directly to your designated place as required.

Get safe and quick goods shipping with JingSourcing

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