Types of Documents
Proforma Quotation: A Proforma Quotation is a quote prepared by the exporter before shipping the goods, informing the buyer of the goods to be sent, their value, and other key specifications. A Proforma Quotation is usually sent by the exporter in reply to a request for quotation from the consignee.
Proforma Invoice: A Proforma Invoice is an invoice prepared by the exporter before shipping the goods, informing the buyer of the goods to be sent, their value, and other key specifications. It also can be used as an offering of sale or price quotation.
Commercial Invoice: A commercial invoice is a bill for the goods from the seller to the buyer. These invoices are often used by governments to determine the true value of goods when assessing customs duties. Governments that use the commercial invoice to control imports will often specify its form, content, number of copies, language to be used, and other characteristics.
Caricom Invoice: A Caricom Invoice is similar to the Commercial Invoice, except it is specially prepared to comply with Caricom Member States & Caricom Associate Members import requirements.
Invoice Pick List: An invoice pick list is a detailed listing of goods that sometimes accompanies the Commercial Invoice. Details include the the invoice number, customer name, package marks, product description, bundle tag number, pack size, total number pieces shipped & extended unit of measure for each item, and the total number of bundles.
Bill of Lading: A bill of lading is a contract between the owner of the goods and the carrier. For vessels, there are two types: a straight bill of lading, which is non-negotiable, and a negotiable or shipper's order bill of lading. The latter can be bought, sold, or traded while the goods are in transit. The consignee usually needs an original as proof of ownership to take possession of the goods.
Certificate of Origin: The Certificate of Origin (CO) is required by some countries for. In many cases, a statement of origin printed on company letterhead will suffice. Some countries require that certificate of origin be notarized, certified by local chamber of commerce and legalized by the commercial section of the consulate of the destination country.
Special certificates may be required for countries with which the United States has free trade agreements (FTAs). Some certificates of origins including those required by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the FTAs with Israel and Jordan, are prepared by the exporter. Others including those required by the FTAs with Australia; the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) countries; Chile; and Morocco; are the importer's responsibility.
Fumigation Certificate: The Fumigation Certificate provides evidence of the fumigation of exported goods. This form assists in the quarantine clearance of any goods of plant or animal origin. The seller is typically required to fumigate the commodity at his or her expense a maximum of 15 days prior to loading.
Insurance Certificate: Insurance certificates are used to assure the consignee that insurance will cover the loss of or damage to the cargo during transit. Some countries may require certification or notification.
Phytosanitary Inspection Certificate: A document issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to satisfy import regulations in some countries. The certificate stipulates that the shipment has been inspected and is free of harmful pests or plant diseases.
Import Permit and/or License: Import permits or licenses are the responsibility of the importer and vary depending upon destination and product. Sometimes a copy of an import license is necessary for issuance of the Phytosanitary Certificate.
Kiln Drying Certificate: Some countries require shipments of lumber materials to have proof of drying the lumber in kilns at a specified temperature, for a specified duration, and to a specified moisture content. In some cases, the moisture content of the lumber is verified at the time of inspection for the USDA Phytosanitary Certificate.