49 U.S. Code § 80111 - Liability for delivery of goods

(a) General Rules.— A common carrier is liable for damages to a person having title to, or right to possession of, goods when—
(1) the carrier delivers the goods to a person not entitled to their possession unless the delivery is authorized under section 80110 (b)(2) or (3) of this title;
(2) the carrier makes a delivery under section 80110 (b)(2) or (3) of this title after being requested by or for a person having title to, or right to possession of, the goods not to make the delivery; or
(3) at the time of delivery under section 80110 (b)(2) or (3) of this title, the carrier has information it is delivering the goods to a person not entitled to their possession.
(b) Effectiveness of Request or Information.— A request or information is effective under subsection (a)(2) or (3) of this section only if—
(1) an officer or agent of the carrier, whose actual or apparent authority includes acting on the request or information, has been given the request or information; and
(2) the officer or agent has had time, exercising reasonable diligence, to stop delivery of the goods.
(c) Failure To Take and Cancel Bills.— Except as provided in subsection (d) of this section, if a common carrier delivers goods for which a negotiable bill of lading has been issued without taking and canceling the bill, the carrier is liable for damages for failure to deliver the goods to a person purchasing the bill for value in good faith whether the purchase was before or after delivery and even when delivery was made to the person entitled to the goods. The carrier also is liable under this paragraph if part of the goods are delivered without taking and canceling the bill or plainly noting on the bill that a partial delivery was made and generally describing the goods or the remaining goods kept by the carrier.
(d) Exceptions to Liability.— A common carrier is not liable for failure to deliver goods to the consignee or owner of the goods or a holder of the bill if—
(1) a delivery described in subsection (c) of this section was compelled by legal process;
(2) the goods have been sold lawfully to satisfy the carrier’s lien;
(3) the goods have not been claimed; or
(4) the goods are perishable or hazardous.


(Pub. L. 103–272, § 1(e),July 5, 1994, 108 Stat. 1350.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
49 App.:90 (less last par.).
Aug. 29, 1916, ch. 415, §§ 10–12, 26, 39 Stat. 540, 542.
49 App.:90 (last par.).
49 App.:91 (words after 2d comma).
49 App.:92 (words after 2d comma).
49 App.:91 (words before 2d comma).
49 App.:92 (words before 2d comma).
49 App.:106.

In subsection (a), before clause (1), the word “title” is substituted for “right of property” for consistency in this chapter.
In subsection (c), the words “negotiable bill of lading” are substituted for “order bill . . . the negotiation of which would transfer the right to the possession of the goods” in 49 App.:91 for consistency in this chapter.

The table below lists the classification updates, since Jan. 3, 2012, for this section. Updates to a broader range of sections may be found at the update page for containing chapter, title, etc.

The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013

An empty table indicates that we see no relevant changes listed in the classification tables. If you suspect that our system may be missing something, please double-check with the Office of the Law Revision Counsel.

49 USCDescription of ChangeSession YearPublic LawStatutes at Large


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