Terms and Conditions



of The Canadian International Freight Forwarding Association  

Association des Transitaires internationaux Canadiens, Inc. 

Adopted May 20, 2021



The Company offers its services on the basis of these conditions that apply to all  activities of the Company in arranging transportation or providing related services, such  as, but not limited to, warehousing and any other kind of logistics services. The Company may provide its services as either principal or agent. The Company acts as agent of the  Customer, except  

(a) where it issues a transport document or electronic record evidencing its  obligation for the delivery of goods, or  

(b) to the extent it physically handles goods by its own employees and equipment  in the course of performing any service in which cases it acts as principal,  

but whether acting as principal or as agent these conditions govern the rights and  liabilities of the Customer and the Company. 

When determining any rights or liabilities of the Company under these conditions, the  word “Customer” shall include the party giving instructions, the shipper, the consignee,  and the owner of the goods. Notwithstanding the foregoing, advice is for the Customer only and is not to be furnished to any other party without the Company’s prior written  consent. Gratuitous advice and information that is not related to instructions accepted by  the Company is provided without liability of any kind, including for negligence.  


These Conditions also apply whenever any claim is made against any employee, agent  or independent contractor engaged by the Company to perform any transport or related  service for the Customer's goods, whether such claims are founded in contract or in tort,  and the aggregate liability of the Company and all such persons shall not exceed the  limitations of liability in these conditions. For purposes of this clause the Company acts  as agent for all such persons who may ratify such agency at any subsequent time. 


When acting as an agent, the Company acts solely on behalf of the Customer in  engaging the services of third parties on the usual terms and conditions on which the  third parties offer such services for the carriage, storage, packing or handling of any  goods, or for any other service in relation to them, thereby establishing a direct contract  between the Customer and the provider of such services capable of being enforced by  the Customer as principal, whether or not the Customer is identified in the contract. The  Company shall on demand by the Customer provide evidence of any contracts made on  its behalf. 


Where requested by the Customer the Company may  

(a) issue a transport document or electronic record by which it as principal  undertakes carriage of particular goods; or 

(b) guarantee in writing proper performance of the terms of any contract  between the Customer and a third party whose services the Company has  engaged on behalf of the Customer. 

Where it issues a transport document or electronic record, or provides a guarantee, the  rights and obligations of the Company will be governed by the special conditions therein  in addition to these conditions, and in any event the Company is liable only to the same  extent as the third party who performs the carriage or guaranteed service, as may be  limited by the conditions on which that party customarily offers its services. In the event  of any inconsistency with these provisions, the special conditions prevail.  


The Customer must give instructions in writing to the Company a reasonable time before  the tender of goods for storage or transport where it requests the Company to: 

(a) arrange for the departure or arrival of goods before specific dates; 

(b) arrange for goods to be carried, stored or handled separately from other  goods; 

(c) arrange for the transport of goods that may taint or affect other goods, or  may harbour or encourage vermin or pests; 

(d) make a declaration of value or special interest in delivery to any carrier  or terminal; 

(e) direct carriers or delivery agents to hold goods until payment of any  amount or until surrender of a document; 

(f) arrange for the transport of goods of unusual high value, luxury goods,  currency, negotiable Instruments or securities of any kind, precious  metals or stones; antiques or art; human remains, livestock or plants, or  

any other comparable cargos.  

Where for any reason it does not accept such instructions, the Company must promptly  so advise the Customer by any means of communication used in the ordinary course of  business. If it continues to use the Company's services for the contemplated transport  after receiving such advice, the Customer assumes all risks connected with the non 

performance of such instructions, whether caused or contributed to by the Company's  negligence or not.  


(A) The Company shall exercise reasonable care in the discharge of its obligations  including the selection and instruction of third parties that provide any services  engaged on behalf of the Customer.  

(B) The Company shall arrange transport and any related services within a  reasonable time after receiving the Customer's instructions. 

(C) If it has reasonable grounds for departing from any of the Customer's  instructions, the Company can do so without prior authorization from the  Customer, but must act with due regard to the interests of the Customer, and, as  soon as possible, inform the Customer of its actions and any additional charges  resulting therefrom. 


(A) The Customer shall be deemed to be competent and to have reasonable  knowledge of matters affecting the conduct of its business, including terms of purchase and sale, the need for insurance and the extent of coverage available  for the type of goods being tendered for shipment, the need to preserve and  retain documentation, the need for care to avoid transmitting viruses by  electronic communications, the need for confidential handling of information  relating to high value goods, and all other matters relating thereto.

(B) The Customer warrants that all information in whatever form relating to the  general and dangerous character of the goods, their description, bar-coding,  marks, number, weight, volume and quantity of the goods, as furnished by the  Customer or on its behalf, was accurate and complete at the time the goods were  taken in charge by the Company or any third party whose services it has  engaged. The Customer further undertakes to provide independent confirmation  of such particulars on the request of the Company. 


(A) Except where the Company has accepted instructions in respect of the  preparation, packing, stowage, labeling or marking of the goods the Customer warrants that all goods have been properly and sufficiently prepared, packed,  stowed, labeled and/or marked, and that the preparation, packing, stowage,  labeling and marking are appropriate to any operations or transactions affecting  the goods and the characteristics of the goods. Without limiting the foregoing the  Customer is responsible for timely communication of and warrants the accuracy  of the verified gross mass (VGM) of the package(s) and or the transport unit and  the identity of the duly authorized person so verifying. The customer shall  maintain documentation evidencing measurement of VGM as required by law. 

(B) Unless the Company has accepted instructions to arrange for or to perform the  loading of a transport unit by its employees, the Customer warrants that: 

(a) the transport unit has been properly and competently loaded; 

(b) the goods are suitable for carriage in or on the transport unit; and 

(c) the transport unit is in a suitable condition to carry the goods loaded  therein (save to such extent as the Company has approved the suitability of the  transport unit). 

  2. A) The Company does not assume a role as principal by providing a fixed price quotation,  or by rendering an invoice where the difference between the amounts payable to third  parties retained to carry out the Customer's instructions and the fixed price represents the  Company's gross profit for its services. A Customer agrees that the Company is an agent  as provided in Section 1 where the Customer 

(a) accepts a fixed price quotation, or 

(b) does not within thirty days after receipt of the invoice object to the  Company charging a fixed price for its services. 

(B) Quotations are given on the basis of immediate acceptance and are subject to  withdrawal or revision. Unless otherwise provided in the quotation the Company may,  after acceptance, revise quotations or charges upon notice in the event of changes  beyond the Company's control, including changes in exchange rates, rates of freight,  carrier surcharges, or any charges applicable to the goods. 


When goods are accepted or dealt with upon instructions to collect freight, duties,  charges or other expenses from the consignee or any other person, the Customer shall  remain responsible for the same if they are not paid by such consignee or other person  immediately when due. 


If events or circumstances, including a Customer's failure to take delivery, occur that  affect performance of the Customer's mandate, the Company shall take reasonable steps  to obtain the Customer's further instructions. If for whatever reason it does not receive  timely instructions, the Company may  

(a) store the goods at the sole risk and expense of the Customer, or  

(b) sell the goods immediately and without further notice, and hold any net  proceeds for the account of the Customer or  

(c) authorize any third party to abandon carriage and make the Goods or  any part of them available to the Customer at a place that is reasonable in the  circumstances. 


(A) The Customer undertakes not to tender for transportation any goods that are of a  dangerous, inflammable, radioactive, hazardous or damaging nature without giving full  particulars of the goods to the Company. The Customer undertakes to mark the goods  and the outside of any packages or container in which they may be placed to comply with  any laws or regulations that may be applicable during the carriage. In the case of goods  where the place of receipt is a point within Canada, the Customer further warrants that  the goods, the packaging and marking thereof comply in all respects with the provisions  of any legislation or regulations governing the transportation of dangerous goods.  

(B) If its fails to comply with the requirements of sub-clause (A), the Customer shall  indemnify the Company against all loss, damage or expense arising out of the goods  being tendered for transportation or handled or carried by or on behalf of third parties  retained by the Company. 

(C) Goods which in the opinion of the Company or the person who has custody or  possession thereof are or may become dangerous and present a hazard may at any time  or place be unloaded, destroyed or rendered harmless without liability on the part of the  Company. 


(A) The Customer must give the Company instructions in writing to arrange insurance on  its goods a reasonable time before the tender of goods for storage or transport. The  Company may carry out these instructions by declaring the value of the goods under an  open marine cargo policy taken out by the Company, and, upon request, provide a  certificate or declaration of insurance, or other evidence of insurance. The coverage on  goods so declared is subject to the terms and conditions of the policy. The Company is  not liable if the Customer for any reason whatsoever fails to recover a loss in whole or in  part from the insurer under the policy, even though the premium charged by the insurer is  different from the Company's charges to the Customer.  

(B) If coverage under its open marine cargo policy is not satisfactory, the Company will  recommend an insurance broker to arrange insurance appropriate to the Customer's  needs. After making this recommendation, the Company has no further duty regarding  insurance, and no liability for loss of or damage to the goods during transport or storage  that could have been covered by insurance on the goods, whether such loss or damage  has been caused or contributed to by its negligence or breach of these conditions, or  otherwise. 


The Customer on its own behalf and on behalf of the owner of the goods shall notify the  Company in writing of any claim

(a) in case of loss and/or damage to goods within 7 days of the completion  of transit,  

(b) in case of delay in delivery or non-delivery within 45 days of the date  when the goods should have been delivered,  

(c) in any other case within 45 days of the event giving rise to the claim. 

If a claim was not discoverable by the exercise of reasonable care within the applicable  time period, the Customer must give notice forthwith after receiving information as to  events that may give rise to a claim. Failing notice as required by this clause, the claim is  barred and no action can be brought against the Company to enforce the claim. 


Compensation for any claim for which the Company is liable shall not in any event  exceed:  

(a) 2 SDR (SDR = IMF Special Drawing Right) per kilo of the gross weight of  the goods that are the subject of the claim;  

(b) 666.67 SDR per enumerated package of goods that are the subject of the  claim; or  

(c) 75,000 SDR per transaction;  

whichever is less, provided however that where a higher limitation of liability is  mandatorily applicable by law then that higher limitation of liability shall apply.  

Without prejudice to any other conditions herein or other defences available to the  Company, in no circumstances whatsoever shall the Company be liable to the Customer  or owner for consequential or indirect loss, including losses arising from delay or loss of  market.  

Upon the Customer’s written request, the Company may accept liability in excess of  these limits in writing, provided the Customer pays the Company’s additional charges for  such increased liability. 


The Customer shall indemnify the Company against all duties, taxes, payments, fines,  expenses, losses, claims and liabilities, including without limitation any storage,  demurrage, port, or terminal charges and any liability to indemnify any other person  against claims made against such other person by the Customer or by the owner  

(a) for which the Company may be held responsible unless caused or  contributed to by any negligence or breach of duty of the Company, or 

(b) in excess of the liability of the Company in accordance with these  Conditions,  

resulting from or connected with the actions of the Company related to any service to  which these Conditions apply. 


The Customer shall pay to the Company in cash, or as otherwise agreed, all sums  immediately when due without reduction or deferment on account of any claim,  counterclaim or set off.


All goods (and documents relating to goods) shall be subject to a particular and general  lien and right of detention for monies owing either in respect of such goods, or for any  particular or general balance or other monies owed, whether then due or not, by the  Customer, sender, consignee or owner of the goods to the Company. If these monies  remain unpaid for 10 days after the Company sends notice of the exercise of its rights to  these persons by any means of communication reasonable in the circumstances, the  goods may be sold by private contract or otherwise at the sole discretion of the  Company, and the net proceeds applied on account of the monies owing. The Company will not be liable for any deficiencies or reduction in value received on the sale of the  goods nor, will the Customer be relieved from the liability merely because the goods have  been sold. 


The Company shall be relieved of any and all liability for any loss or damage if, and to the  extent that, such loss or damage is the result of an event or circumstance (a “force  majeure” event) that prevents the Company from performing one or more of its  contractual obligations to the extent that the Company is affected by an impediment  which is beyond its reasonable control, such impediment could not reasonably have been  foreseen and could not reasonably been avoided or overcome by the Company acting in  a commercially reasonable manner. The following events shall be presumed to be a  “force majeure” event: a) war (whether declared or not), hostilities, invasion, acts of  foreign enemies, extensive military mobilization; b) civil war, riot, rebellion and revolution,  military or usurped power, insurrection, acts of terrorism, sabotage or piracy; c) currency  and trade restriction, blockade, embargo, sanction; d) act of government authority  whether lawful or unlawful, compliance with any law or governmental order, expropriation,  seizure of works, requisition, nationalization; e) plague, epidemic, pandemic, natural  disaster, extreme natural event, extreme weather event, nuclear, chemical or biological  contamination; f) explosion, fire, destruction of equipment, prolonged break-down of  transport, telecommunication, information system or energy; g) general labour  disturbance such as boycott, strike and lock-out, go-slow, occupation of factories and  premises; or any other event or circumstance beyond the Company’s control. In such  circumstances the Company is entitled to modify its services, procedures, rates, prices,  and surcharges as in the Company’s reasonable discretion are considered necessary,  and the Company is entitled to full remuneration and indemnity for any charges so  incurred or applied. 


The Company shall, unless otherwise expressly agreed, be discharged of all liability  under these conditions unless suit is brought within 9 months from  

(a) the date of delivery of the goods for claims to damage to goods, or  

(b) the date when the goods should have been delivered for claims for delay  in delivery or loss of goods. 

With respect to loss or damage other than loss of or damage to the goods, the 9 months  period shall be counted from the time when the act or omission of the Company giving  rise to the claim occurred. 


The Company shall be entitled to be paid and retain all brokerages paid by carriers,  commissions, documentation allowances, profits on foreign exchange and other  remunerations paid by third parties as is customary in the trade.


These Conditions shall be governed by the laws of Canada and of the province within  Canada in which the Company has its principal place of business. By accepting the  services provided under these Conditions, the Customer irrevocably attorns to the  exclusive jurisdiction of the Courts of that Province and the Federal Court of Canada. 

The Parties agree that where they have used electronic communications to transact in  whole or in part any business such communications will be given legal effect in  accordance with the provisions (so far as they may be applicable) of the Uniform  Electronic Commerce Act as approved by the Uniform Law Conference of Canada.  

“The English version of these Standard Trading Conditions of CIFFA shall be decisive. The  Standard Trading Conditions of CIFFA shall be translated and available in French. In the event of  a dispute, the English version of the STC’s shall prevail.”