U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jun 23, 2024

§ 375.211 - Must I have an arbitration program?

(a) You must have an arbitration program for individual shippers to resolve disputes about property loss and damage and disputes about whether carrier charges in addition to those collected at delivery must be paid. You must establish and maintain an arbitration program with the following 11 minimum elements:

(1) You must design your arbitration program to prevent you from having any special advantage in any case where the claimant resides or does business at a place distant from your principal or other place of business.

(2) Before execution of the bill of lading, you must provide notice to the individual shipper of the availability of neutral arbitration, including all three of the following items:

(i) A summary of the arbitration procedure.

(ii) Any applicable costs.

(iii) A disclosure of the legal effects of election to use arbitration.

(3) Upon the individual shipper's request, you must provide information and forms you consider necessary for initiating an action to resolve a dispute under arbitration.

(4) You must require each person you authorize to arbitrate to be independent of the parties to the dispute and capable of resolving such disputes, and you must ensure the arbitrator is authorized and able to obtain from you or the individual shipper any material or relevant information to carry out a fair and expeditious decisionmaking process.

(5) You must not charge the individual shipper more than one-half of the total cost for instituting the arbitration proceeding against you. In the arbitrator's decision, the arbitrator may determine which party must pay the cost or a portion of the cost of the arbitration proceeding, including the cost of instituting the proceeding.

(6) You must refrain from requiring the individual shipper to agree to use arbitration before a dispute arises.

(7) Arbitration must be binding for claims of $10,000 or less, if the individual shipper requests arbitration.

(8) Arbitration must be binding for claims of more than $10,000, if the individual shipper requests arbitration and the carrier agrees to it.

(9) If all parties agree, the arbitrator may provide for an oral presentation of a dispute by a party or representative of a party.

(10) The arbitrator must render a decision within 60 days of receipt of written notification of the dispute, and a decision by an arbitrator may include any remedies appropriate under the circumstances.

(11) The arbitrator may extend the 60-day period for a reasonable period if you or the individual shipper fail to provide, in a timely manner, any information the arbitrator reasonably requires to resolve the dispute.

(b) You must produce and distribute a concise, easy-to-read, accurate summary of your arbitration program, including the items in this section.

[68 FR 35091, June 11, 2003, as amended at 69 FR 10575, Mar. 5, 2004; 72 FR 36772, July 5, 2007; 87 FR 24446, Apr. 26, 2022]