How to Dispute and Avoid Sort and Segregation Fees
Auditing your invoices can be challenging. Especially as many regular charges during the COVID-19 pandemic have changed.
Accessorial charges are additional charges that regularly occur on a move on top-of-the-line haul and fuel surcharge. Many of these charges are quite common. Fees for reweighs, detention, or cross-border fees are billed regularly.
One of the biggest challenges has been sort and segregation. This is charged when a shipment arrives at a delivery location and the driver will both unload the freight and count all, or part, of the cases. As verification, the count should be recorded on the POD. Many carriers have the known sort and segregation setup to automatically charge based on the case count on the POD. And this is where the problem begins.
Due to the pandemic, many locations have stopped allowing drivers to perform sort and segregation. They either have the dock staff unload the truck and forgo the count requirement or use a third-party lumper service. But many carriers are still charging for sort and segregation, despite the service not being provided.
So, what can you do?
Audit your invoices.
Don’t take any service for granted. If you don’t have a trusted partner auditing your invoices for you, you’ll need to allocate time for your staff. But the money you save making the calls could outweigh the cost of paying for services that weren’t performed.
Pick up the phone.
Call every location charging you for the service. Ask for the receiving department, or if that department is only available at night, ask for customer service. Ask the person who answers to verify what, if any, service they require, and make sure you get their name.
What to do when making your dispute
Put your dispute in writing. Having a proper paper trail is important if you receive resistance to your dispute.
I recommend listing both your internal move ID and the carrier shipment ID in the subject line of the email for easier tracking of your dispute.
Clearly identify the destination location, the person you spoke with, their contact information (email or phone number), and state their current policy for the service.
Accessorial charges like sort and segregation fees can add up quickly. But by auditing your invoices and keeping an eye out for unnecessary fees, you can minimize the impact of these charges on your budget.
Looking for additional ways to save on your freight spend? Contact us today!