General Terms of Business (Terms and Conditions)

Section 1 Scope, applicable law

(1)  The following General Terms of Business (hereinafter “Terms and Conditions”) shall apply to transport contracts (freight, forwarding and storage contracts) as well as to contracts which are connected with the other logistical services which must accordingly be rendered.

(2)  Unless expressly otherwise stipulated by the Terms and Conditions, the General German Forwarders’ Conditions (ADSp) shall apply by way of supplementation to the contracts according to Section 1, Paragraph 1.

(3)  The contracts according to Section 1, Paragraph 1 shall be governed by German law. If they fall within the field of application of imperative international legal conventions, such as especially

  • the Convention for the Unification of Certain Rules for International Carriage by Air (Montreal Convention), the Warsaw Convention of 1929 (Warsaw Convention) and the Hague Protocol of 28 May 1955, the Supplementary Convention of Guadalajara of 18 September 1961 or other authoritative supplementary conventions for air transport;
  • the Convention on the Contract for the International Carriage of Goods by Road (CMR);
  • the Uniform Rules Concerning the Contract of International Carriage of Goods by Rail (CIM);
  • the Hague Rules and the Hague-Visby Rules or the Maritime Law Amendment Act of 25 June 1986, the Hamburg Rules as well as other authoritative international conventions or national statutory provisions for sea transport,

these conventions shall be applicable.


Section 2 Conclusion of the contract, scope of performance

(1)  Unless otherwise stipulated in these Terms and Conditions or unless otherwise expressly agreed by the parties, the contract shall come into existence with the acceptance of the order by telephone by OBC.

(2)  The performance of OBC shall in principle be restricted to collection, transport, customs clearance and delivery of the carried goods (hereinafter overall referred to as “carriage”). Other services shall only be rendered if this has been expressly agreed in an individual case.


Section 3 Carriage and performance restrictions, shipper’s risk

(1)  OBC shall not assume the carriage of goods and the rendering of other accordingly related performance if IATA and/or ICAO provisions or other legal or safety stipulations would thus be infringed. The following goods are excluded from carriage and the other thus related performance:

  • Goods with an exceptional value and/or a value which is difficult to estimate, i.e. especially money, precious metals, jewellery, clocks or watches, precious stones, objects d’art, antiques, cheque cards, credit cards, valid telephone cards or other means of payment, stamps, securities, valuable assets, documents or certificates;
  • Spirits and other alcoholic beverages;
  • Consumer electronics;
  • Telecommunications appliances;
  • EDP appliances and accessories;
  • Weapons, ammunition, any manner of military equipment as well as goods which may injure, infect or kill people;
  • Tobacco and tobacco products;
  • Foodstuffs, perishable goods, especially also meat, meat products and grain;
  • Motor vehicles;
  • Live animals and plants;
  • Pornographic material;
  • Medical drugs;
  • Goods which give off high-energy ionising rays (e.g. radioactive substances);
  • Laser systems and goods which emit laser beams;
  • Goods whose carriage infringes national or international laws, agreements, official bans or other provisions under public law (e.g. ivory and ivory products, skins, hides of wild animals, seeds).

(2) The shipment must be suitable for transport on aircraft. The individual weight per package may not exceed 32 kg in the case of carriage as luggage. Only shipments with maximum dimensions of 55x40x20 cm and a maximum weight of 8 kg may be taken on board an aircraft as luggage once authorisation has been granted by the airline depending on the type of goods.

(3)  OBC only accepts locked or sealed shipments for carriage, which will generally not be opened during carriage. OBC nevertheless reserves the right to open and examine the shipment.

(4)  A contract shall only be concluded regarding performance or goods according to Section 3, Paragraph 1 if OBC authorises carriage before or upon acceptance of the goods in writing. The authorisation may only be issued by the management of OBC or by persons who have presented written power of attorney of the management of OBC to the shipper.

(5)  The shipper shall bear the sole risk of a carriage of goods which contravenes Section 3, Paragraph 1 if OBC has not expressly authorised the carriage of these goods in writing before or upon their acceptance according to Section 3, Paragraph 4. The shipper shall be liable for all losses suffered by the shipper’s package and/or at OBC and/or third parties. The shipper must furthermore bear the costs and the additional expenses for appropriate measures which are occasioned by OBC to eliminate the condition contrary to the terms or to avert risks (e.g. by interim storage, return shipment, disposal, cleaning, safeguarding, etc.).


Section 4 Prices, payment

(1)  The remuneration for the carriage, including related and additional performance, shall be paid in accordance with an agreement which is to be concluded separately.

(2) The statutory rate of value added tax shall be levied on all prices.

(3) Invoices must be settled within 8 calendar days after receipt without deduction.


Section 5 Disruptions to the means of transport

In the case of disruptions to the means of transport, e.g. loading of wrong goods, breakdowns or delays, OBC is entitled to make changes to the carriage if this is advisable for due and orderly, especially timely, delivery. Thus incurred additional expenditure and additional costs must be reimbursed by the customer.


Section 6 Statement of the carriage data

The shipper shall bear the responsibility for the due and orderly transmission of the necessary carriage data, especially for the truthful denotation of the carried goods in terms of content and quantity (number of units, weight, value, etc.) and for the correct details of the shipper’s and recipient’s address.


Section 7 Packing

(1)  The shipper must pack the carried goods in a due and orderly manner, i.e. regarding the respective means of transport, especially also in a manner appropriate for freight, meaning that the goods are protected as well as possible against loss, damage and/or destruction, especially also in air transport.

(2)   OBC is entitled, however not obliged, both to make changes to the packing and to repack the shipment.


Section 8 Customs clearance

(1)  In the case of carriage of goods abroad, OBC shall only undertake the customs clearance if the customer expressly awards an order to do so. In this case, the shipper must furnish OBC with the accordingly necessary powers of attorney. In the case of carriage to the United States (USA), OBC must be appointed as the agent by the shipper to enable customs clearance.

(2)   The shipper must provide OBC with the correct and complete documents which are prescribed for customs clearance. OBC is not obliged to check that these documents are correct and complete.

(3)   Any costs of customs clearance, including customs duties, taxes, customs fines, storage costs and other necessary expenses, shall be borne by the shipper. The shipper shall also remain liable for the above costs if the shipper has commissioned OBC to collect the costs from the recipient. The shipper shall furthermore be liable for the costs of the return of goods ordered by the customs authorities if and in so far as OBC is not to blame for the return.


Section 9 Delivery

(1)  The signature of the recipient on the OBC consignment note or on another confirmation of receipt shall serve as proof of delivery. The signature of a person present in the business or household on one of the documents stated in Section 9, Paragraph 1, Sentence 1 shall also serve as proof of delivery if no legitimate doubts exist concerning the person’s authorisation to take receipt of the goods.

(2)  If delivery to the recipient cannot take place at the first attempt, then OBC, after prior consultation with the shipper, shall undertake a second attempt at delivery.

(3)  From the first failed attempt at delivery the shipper shall bear the additional expenses which OBC incurs on account of the failure to effect delivery. OBC shall be entitled to reasonable remuneration for the incurred additional expenditure.

(4)  The delivery dates stated in the confirmation of order shall not apply if circumstances occur which were unavoidable for OBC and whose consequences could not reasonably be averted by OBC (e.g. war, strike, flight schedule alterations, customs-related delays, etc.).


Section 10 Amendments to the carriage order

If the shipper amends the carriage order in whole or in part, then the shipper shall bear all costs which OBC thus incurs. OBC shall be entitled to reasonable remuneration for the additional expenditure. The shipper shall also remain liable for the above costs if the shipper has commissioned OBC to collect the costs from the recipient.


Section 11 Transport insurance/insurance of the goods

(1)  OBC is only obliged to insure the shipment if it has received a corresponding express written order from the shipper which states the insurable value and the risks which are to be covered. The mere statement of the value shall not be regarded as an order to take out insurance. In the case of damage to or loss of the shipment, only the actual value of the goods is insurable. The actual value of the goods is to be regarded as either the replacement/restoration value or the fair market value at the time and place of shipment, in which respect the lower value shall be decisive.

(2)  Shipments for which other effective insurance against loss or damage exists cannot be insured by OBC.

(3) Shipments whose actual value of the goods exceeds the maximum liability limits according to the valid provisions can be insured against the payment of special remuneration up to a maximum limit of USD 1,000,000.00, duly heeding the procedure according to Section 11, Paragraph 1.


Section 12 Right of lien and retention

(1)  OBC has on account of all claims due and not due arising from a contract according to Section 1, Paragraph 1 a right of lien and a right of retention to the goods and other assets under its power of disposal. The right of lien and retention shall not exceed the statutory right of lien and retention.

(2)  OBC may only exercise a right of lien or retention due to claims arising from other contracts concluded with the shipper, i.e. especially such contracts according to Section 1, Paragraph 1, if they are undisputed or if the shipper’s financial situation endangers the claims of OBC. If the goods or assets which are to be carried are not owned by the shipper and if OBC could not trust in the ownership of the shipper, then a right of lien or retention shall not exist on account of claims arising from other contracts concluded with the shipper.

(3)  In other respects, the regulations of Sections 20.3 to 20.5 of the General German Forwarders’ Conditions (ADSp) shall be applicable.


Section 13 Liability, increase of the maximum liability sum

(1)  OBC shall be liable according to the prevailing provisions in accordance with Section 1, Paragraphs 2 and 3.

(2)  An increase of the maximum liability sums shall exclusively be effected against payment of a surcharge which is to be agreed separately. The indication of the particular interest of the shipper in the delivery of the shipment to the destination shall not in itself give reason for an increase of the maximum liability sums.

Section 14 Data protection

OBC is entitled to collect, store and process data which the shipper or the recipient provides in connection with the carriage of goods. OBC is entitled to forward this data to third parties – domiciled at home or abroad – (e.g. customs authorities, subcontractors, cooperation partners, etc.) if this is beneficial for the purpose of carriage.


Section 15 Assertion of claims

Claims against OBC must be asserted without delay, if possible in writing, according to the applicable provisions in accordance with Section 1, Paragraphs 2 and 3.


Section 16 Place of jurisdiction

(1)  The competence of the courts shall be determined according to the provisions stated in Section 1, Paragraph 3. If the agreement of an additional place of jurisdiction is permissible according to these provisions, the competence of the Chinese courts shall be agreed as the additional place of jurisdiction.

(2)  In the case of the competence of the Chinese courts, the local place of jurisdiction shall be Shenzhen.


Section 17 Final provision

If a part of the above provisions is or becomes ineffective, then this shall not affect the effectiveness of the other provisions.

As of: 27 November 2015