62-271.  Collection of rates and charges of motor carriers of household goods.

No common carriers of household goods by motor vehicle shall deliver or relinquish possession at destination of any freight transported by it in intrastate commerce until all tariff rates and charges thereon have been paid, except under such rules and regulations as the Commission may from time to time prescribe to govern the settlement of all such rates and charges, including rules and regulations for weekly or monthly settlement, and to prevent unjust discrimination or undue preference or prejudice; provided, that the provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit any such carrier from extending credit in connection with rates and charges on freight transported for the United States, for any department, bureau, or agency thereof, or for the State, or political subdivision thereof. Where any common carrier by motor vehicle is instructed by a shipper or consignor to deliver household goods transported by such carrier to a consignee other than the shipper or consignor, such consignee shall not be legally liable for transportation charges in respect of the transportation of such household goods (beyond those billed against him at the time of delivery for which he is otherwise liable) which may be found to be due after the household goods have been delivered to him, if the consignee (i) is an agent only and had no beneficial title in the household goods, and (ii) prior to delivery of the household goods has notified the delivering carrier in writing of the fact of such agency and absence of beneficial title, and, in the case of shipment reconsigned or diverted to a point other than that specified in the original bill of lading, has also notified the delivering carrier in writing of the name and address of the beneficial owner of the household goods. In such cases the shipper and consignor, or, in the case of a shipment so reconsigned or diverted, the beneficial owner shall be liable for such additional charges, irrespective of any provisions to the contrary in the bill of lading or in the contract under which the shipment was made. If the consignee has given to the carrier erroneous information as to who is the beneficial owner, such consignee shall himself be liable for such additional charges, notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this section. On shipments reconsigned or diverted by an agent who has furnished the carrier with a notice of agency and the proper name and address of the beneficial owner, and where such shipments are refused or abandoned at ultimate destination, the said beneficial owner shall be liable for all legally applicable charges in connection therewith. (1947, c. 1008, s. 31; 1963, c. 1165, s. 1; 1995, c. 523, s. 24.)