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Picking a fight

WINDSOR, Ont. - The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) is close to floating a legal balloon, which could help fleets and owner/operators recover millions in lost revenues through the courts.When a fre...


WINDSOR, Ont. – The Ontario Trucking Association (OTA) is close to floating a legal balloon, which could help fleets and owner/operators recover millions in lost revenues through the courts.

When a freight broker goes bankrupt, there are usually huge shipping bills left over once the ashes settle and carriers are often forced to eat them. Since the logistics company that had the contract with the fleet is gone, there is no money to collect and no one to chase for it.

“The OTA is attempting to identify a test case to establish shipper liability when load brokers default on payment,” says David Bradley, president of the carrier association. “Currently, the law really goes both ways.”

In the past, government officials have been unwilling or unable to resolve the situation.

“Clearly there is no regulatory solution,” says Bradley. “It’s a business to business issue, so we’ll seek justice in the courts.”

While he insists no decisions are yet finalized on where or when to challenge the matter in court, a leading candidate is beginning to emerge and the case is now being reviewed by the association’s legal team.

Windsor, Ont.-based N’Amerix Logistix recently declared bankruptcy.

“It burned hundreds of carriers, many of which are from Ontario,” says Bradley. He puts the total unpaid bills to his member companies at about $1.8 million.

“Some of these guys are out significant amounts, too,” Bradley adds.

The OTA plans to invite some of N’Amerix’s creditors to a meeting in the near future. If it is the general consensus that this is the place to draw a line in the sand, the next step would be to identify the actual shippers involved and launch a suit.


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