With Long Beach being a major international shipping hub and near major airports and highways, it is little wonder that third-party logistics companies, or 3PLs, play such an important role in Southern California’s economy.
For those who might not be as familiar with the transportation industry, 3PLs are companies with which manufacturers and other organizations contract to handle the business’s warehousing and shipping needs.
The 3PLs will have many legal needs as they go about maintaining and growing their business operations.
For one, just like other businesses, they will have to organize, hire employees, purchase or lease real estate, and do other important tasks which often require the assistance of an experienced attorney.
Moreover, 3PLs also have needs unique to the logistics business.
Be sure to follow local, state and federal laws
There are many local, state and federal laws which apply to 3PLs. Some of these are specific to 3PLs and other third-party shippers. To give just one example, 3PLs which are handling certain drugs will have to obtain a special license from the State of California to do so.
Getting the right license for one’s business will involve meeting several regulatory requirements.
In all cases, whether dealing with transportation-specific laws or laws that apply to businesses generally, creating a plan to respond to government requirements, a process commonly called regulatory compliance, is important for a 3PL business.
Particularly for 3PLs, licensing and other government requirements are complicated. However, not paying attention to these requirements can lead to fines or other more serious consequences for a 3PL business.
These businesses need assistance with contracts and contract disputes
Third-party logistics companies will have to negotiate and sign contracts with customers and others on a regular basis.
When a 3PL does so, it is important that it understand how that contract will legally affect their organization. The business should approach any contract aware of the possible legal consequences as well as potential alternatives.
Logistics companies will also want to be sure that the contract is clear enough to reduce the possibility of confusion or disputes.
That being said, sometimes disputes happen despite everyone’s best efforts. In these cases, the business will need to determine how to resolve their disputes efficiently and with as little risk to the business as possible.