By Mitch Kinek

Category: Logistics

Topic: Freight, LTL

What are LTL Carrier Tariffs?

LTL Carrier Tariff

An LTL Carrier Tariff governs the relationship between a carrier and a shipper. The tariff covers various fee structures such as line haul, fuel surcharge, accessorial, and other shipment-related rules.

Definition of a Carrier Tariff

A tariff means a publication containing the actual rate, charges, classifications, rules, regulations, and practices of a common carrier or a conference of a common carriers. The document is a legal document that outlines the practices and rates of a carrier. This document serves as a contract between the carrier and shipper, and can be for interstate or intrastate services. Most common uses for tariffs are to cover various fee structures such as line haul, fuel surcharge, accessorial, and other shipment-related fees.

History of LTL Tariffs

Over the years, the trucking industry has adopted significant changes, helping to shape the modern LTL Carrier Tariffs. Tariffs began in 1935 when Congress passed the Motor Carrier Act of 1935 to restrict new entrants into the industry and required motor carriers to file tariffs, or publish pricing, to the International Commerce Committee (ICC) at least 30 days before they take effect.

In 1980, Congress passed the Motor Carrier Act of 1980, deregulating the trucking industry and allowing more competition in the industry. This deregulation created competition among carriers, resulting in lower rates and increasing quality in service by carriers.

In 1995, the Surface Transportation Board (STB) mandated that carriers must publish their rates on their websites. Publishing tariffs on carrier websites allow shippers to compare rates easier with better access to tariffs. The STB then required carriers to disclose all accessorial charges on their bill of ladings in 2010.

Today, carriers continue to publish their tariffs on their website. However, technology has improved carriers ability to provide pricing and new rating practices, such as Dynamic Pricing, are emerging.

How are LTL Carrier Tariffs Created?

Carriers create LTL Tariffs by analyzing the cost of transporting goods to set a base rate and service level to cover those costs. These rules and pricing methods govern how the carrier operates. After determining the rate and rules, carriers submit their tariffs to the Surface Transportation Board (STB). This federal agency is the transportation industry’s regulator and ensures carrier tariffs are fair and comply with regulations.

Navigating LTL Carrier Tariffs

TLI’s logistics services help shippers to navigate through carrier tariffs. With over 30 years of LTL management, our team handles LTL contract negotiations and keeps up to date with LTL Tariff changes. Our LTL Carrier base feature various LTL pricing methods including blanket LTL Contracts, customer specific pricing, point to point, density based, and dynamic pricing.

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