FILING INFORMATION

I. BEFORE PROCEEDING
       Where To Get Forms
Where To Get Help
II. COMPLETING THE FORM
PART A - NAME AND ADDRESS
PART B - BUSINESS INFORMATION
PART C - NAME CHANGE / LICENSE TRANSFER
PART D - QUALIFYING INDIVIDUAL
PART E - OWNERSHIP AND AFFILIATIONS
PART F - BRANCH OFFICES
PART G - CERTIFICATIONS
Fees
Before Filing Your Application
Where To File
Change In Facts
III. WHAT TO EXPECT
Proof Of Financial Responsibility

 

I.      BEFORE PROCEEDING

          You should familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations pertaining to ocean transportation intermediaries (�OTI�). These rules and regulations are contained in section 19 of the Shipping Act of 1984, as amended by the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 1998 and the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 1998, and 46 C.F.R. Part 515 of the Commission's regulations that explains the Licensing and Financial Responsibility Requirements. The section also explains the General Duties for OTIs.  Copies of these documents may be obtained from the FMC�s Bureau of Certification and Licensing (�BCL�) or can be found on the Commission�s website www.fmc.gov.

          Failure to comply with these rules and regulations may result in denial, revocation or suspension of an ocean transportation intermediary license. Persons operating without the proper license may be subject to civil penalties not to exceed $6,000 for each violation. If the violation is willfully and knowingly committed, in which case the amount of the civil penalty may increase to $30,000 for each violation.

Where To Get Forms

          You may obtain copies of the Form FMC-18 and the related Surety Bond Form FMC-48, at the Commission�s website, www.fmc.gov , or by writing to the Federal Maritime Commission, Bureau of Certification and Licensing, 800 North Capitol Street N.W., Washington, D.C. 20573-0001. You may also telephone BCL, Office of Transportation Intermediaries, at (202) 523-5843 or fax at (202) 566-0011.

Where To Get Help

          You may contact BCL any time during normal working hours (8:30 am - 5 pm, EST) by telephone at(202) 523-5843 (Office of Transportation Intermediaries) or by fax at (202) 566-0011.

II. COMPLETING THE FORM

          The Form FMC-18, including any attachments, must be submitted in duplicate with all applicable Parts completed. If a question within a Part is not applicable, write "N/A". Incomplete applications will be returned without processing.

          ALL APPLICATIONS REQUIRE THE COMPLETION OF PARTS A AND G. Other Parts of the FMC-18 must be completed depending on the particular transaction as follows:

     
Application for Parts
Initial application for a license A B D E F G
License transfer A B C E F G
Business structure change A B E F G
Name Change A C G
Replacement or additional qualifying individual      A D E G
Addition of NVOCC or OFF license A F G
Addition or Removal of Trade Name A C G

          All Applications must be typed, no hand written submissions will be accepted. If additional space is needed to respond to Parts B, D, or E, please photocopy the appropriate page and continue entering the information. Clearly mark supplemental pages 1A, 2B, etc. In any other instance where it is necessary to attach a supplemental sheet, please label the supplemental response to match the item number on the application, e.g. Part B, Question No. 7.


PART A - NAME AND ADDRESS

          The complete legal name of the applicant must be shown in this section. If this is an application for a name change or license transfer, please enter the name of the applicant and complete the section C titled Name Change/License Transfer to indicate old name or transferor. A document supporting the legal business name must be attached to the Form FMC-18 with the initial application. Documentation is also required for applications seeking approval of a change in business structure, license transfer, name change, or addition of a trade name, See Part B. All applications must contain a street address indicating the principal place of business (must be the physical address of applicant). Post office boxes are not acceptable as a business address, but may be used for receipt of mail. A license number should be provided only by those persons who are already licensed. An applicant that previously held an OTI license that was revoked or surrendered, must complete Question No. 3, Part B.


Line By Line Instructions

PART B - BUSINESS INFORMATION

1.       Check the appropriate box that applies to the applicant. For corporations, the Articles of Incorporation and minutes of a meeting appointing officers (or other documentation that lists all appointed officers) must be submitted with the application. A "Certificate of Good Standing", issued within 6 months from the date of application, is also needed for any corporation that has been in existence for more than one year. Documentation supporting the use of a trade name must be submitted with an initial application or where the application seeks a change in business structure, license transfer, or name change. For use of more than one trade name, documentation is needed stating which name will be used with the Ocean Freight Forwarder (�OFF�) and Non-Vessel-Operating Common Carrier (�NVOCC�) licenses.

2.       If the applicant is going to conduct OTI business through branch offices in the US or open up a US branch office, this question must be answered in the affirmative and the number of branch offices indicated. If you answered in the affirmative, complete Part F.

3.       If the applicant ever held a license as an ocean transportation intermediary (OFF or NVOCC), or if this is an application for a license transfer, this question must be completed. (For license transfers, the information will be that of the transferring licensee.)

4.      Describe applicant's current business activities, e.g. export shipper, steamship agent, air freight forwarder, NVOCC, etc. If applicant is currently licensed as an ocean freight forwarder or an NVOCC, please include your license and bond numbers.

5.       If applicant intends to share office space or is currently sharing space with another person or firm, please identify the person/firm and explain the relationship, e.g. parent company, no affiliation-paying rent, sister company with common stock ownership, etc.

6.       Identify any person or entity (other than a bank or finance company) who is providing financial assistance to the applicant including anyone who is providing collateral for the surety bond.

7.       Check all the boxes that apply. If the response to any question is yes, please attach an explanation.


PART C - NAME CHANGE / LICENSE TRANSFER

8.       If you are changing the name of your existing company, the new name of the company should appear here. If you are changing your existing corporation�s business structure do not fill out this section. An official document supporting the legal name shall be attached to the Form FMC-18. For corporations, an Amended Articles of Incorporation is needed. For LLPs and LLCs, an Amended Partner Membership Agreement can be used.

          If you are changing your trade name or adding a trade name, you must attach the appropriate documentation supporting that name (e.g. A Fictitious Name Statement). If you are deleting a trade name, clearly specify the name being deleted.

          If you are transferring a license, state the name of the existing company whose license is being transferred from (�transferor�) and identify the company which will receive the license (�transferee�). State if all or part of the company is being transferred (if only part is being transferred list the parts). Provide an explanation of the business practices of both companies. If the transferor will no longer operate as a business provide dissolution papers.


PART D - QUALIFYING INDIVIDUAL

9.       Identify the name and title of the proposed qualifying individual for the applicant. Only the following individuals may be a qualifying individual:

         
  Business Structure Qualifying Individual
Sole proprietor Applicant
Partnership Active managing partner
Corporation Active corporate officer
Limited Liability Company Active partner or officer

 

          If applicant is proposing more than one qualifying individual complete Part D for each individual. Use a different letter for each qualifying individual (i.e., A5, A6, A7, B5, B6, B7, etc...).

10.     Check all the boxes that apply. If replacing a qualifying individual, list the name of the individual being replaced.

11.     Check the box that applies. If the qualifying individual is a corporate officer or partner, attach documentation that will verify that fact, e.g. a copy of the corporate minutes electing the qualifying individual or the partnership agreement.

12.     Show the total number of years and months of ocean transportation intermediary experience that the qualifying individual is submitting for consideration. The qualifying individual must have a minimum of three years experience in the ocean transportation intermediary business in the United States in order to be approved. (See 46 C.F.R. �� 515.2(i) and 515.2(l), 515.11(a)).

13.     Check the boxes that apply. If the response to any question is yes, please attach an explanation.

14.     Show the employment history of the qualifying individual only as it relates to those jobs where experience was gained in the ocean transportation intermediary business in U.S. foreign commerce. (Qualifying Individuals for NVOCC�s not in the US may submit proof of OTI experience obtained outside the US .) To insure that those work experiences qualify, it is suggested that you review 46 C.F.R. �� 515.2(i) and (l) of the Commission's rules. Examples of work experience that are not considered acceptable include experience gained overseas (import) as an ocean freight forwarder, or in air freight forwarding, custom house brokerage, or motor freight forwarding.

15.     Identify three persons, unrelated to the qualifying individual or applicant, who can verify the duties performed by the qualifying individual. The Commission may contact these persons to verify the information set forth on the Form FMC-18.


PART E - OWNERSHIP AND AFFILIATIONS

16.     Sole proprietorships must show the name of the owner. Partnerships or similar entities must list the name of the partners or members. Corporations must list the name and title of each officer, director, or stockholder and the percentage of ownership.

17.     Identify whether applicant, qualifying individual, other officer, director, partner, member, stockholder, parent or holding company will have a beneficial interest in shipments moving in the United States commerce as defined in 46 C.F.R. �� 515.2(b).

18.     Please list any organization or entity of any type whether in the United States or abroad that is affiliated with the applicant. An affiliation is deemed to exist if any person listed in Question 16 is an officer, director, partner, member, owner, stockholder, parent or holding company, or an employee of any other firm in the United States or abroad. Indicate all entities of any type whether in the United States or abroad that is related to the applicant in any other way (e.g., where the applicant holds stock in another entity).

          Applicants that are members of large organization or are affiliated with international conglomerates must submit a list of all subsidiaries and affiliations printed in the group's annual report. Holding company�s identify affiliations that are involved with foreign water borne commerce.


PART F - BRANCH OFFICES

19.     Identify all US branch offices of the applicant that perform OTI services. Incorporated branch offices must be separately licensed. If you need additional space, enter the information on supplemental pages.

          If the applicant is an NVOCC not in the US, it needs to establish a qualifying office in the US. This office is to be listed in Part F. Branch offices outside the US are not required to be listed.


PART G - CERTIFICATIONS

20.     The Form FMC-18 is not considered a valid application unless it is signed. The application must include the title of the individual signing the application and the date of execution. Sole proprietors should also complete the Certification at the top of Page 10 pertaining to the distribution or possession of a controlled substance.


Fees

          Following is a list of the fees required to be submitted with electronic applications:

  Electronic Application for License $ 250
Electronic Application for Status Change or License Transfer* $ 125

          Following is a list of the fees required to be submitted with paper applications:

  Paper Application for License $ 825
Paper Application for Status Change or License Transfer* $ 525

          *Status changes include: name change, addition/removal of trade name, replacement/additional qualifying individual, business structure change or addition of NVOCC/OFF services to an existing license.

          Payments can be made online by debit/credit card and (ACH) or you may may mail a paper check/money order. Please do not send cash. Failure to include the proper fee with your application will cause it to be returned without processing. It should be noted that fees will not be returned in any instance where the application has been processed in whole or part.

Before Filing Your Application

          Please check the application to make certain that all applicable parts have been completed and all questions answered or noted "N/A" within those Parts. Attach all supporting documentation (e.g. proof of legal name) and include the proper fee. Please include the Application Ref. No. if filing electronically. Should you have any questions, please call BCL, Office of Transportation Intermediaries at (202) 523-5843 before filing your application.

Where To File

          Mail or courier the completed application Form (FMC-18) to the Federal Maritime Commission, Bureau of Certification and Licensing, 800 North Capitol Street N.W., Washington, D.C. 20573-0001.

Change In Facts

          Any change in the facts contained in the Form FMC-18 must be reported to the Commission within 30 days of the change. If this is an initial application for a license, the change should be reported as soon as possible to preclude any processing delay that may occur due to the change. There is no fee for filing changes to pending applications.

III. WHAT TO EXPECT

          Generally, you can expect to receive notification that your application has been processed and a decision made within 45 days from receipt of the application, assuming the application is complete and our investigation does not reveal any circumstances that would preclude licensing. Incomplete applications will usually be returned within a week. You can also expect the Commission to contact the references for the qualifying individual(s).

Proof Of Financial Responsibility

          The applicant must obtain proof of financial responsibility upon notification by the Commission that the application for a license as an ocean transportation intermediary has been approved. A license will be issued after the Commission has received acceptable proof of financial responsibility in the form and amount prescribed in 46 C.F.R. � 515.21 of the Commission's ocean transportation intermediary regulations. The name of the principal on the proof of financial responsibility must match exactly the legal name of the applicant including abbreviations and punctuation.

 

          If more than six (6) months lapse between the date of notification of approval of an application and receipt of the proof of financial responsibility, the Commission will, at its discretion, undertake a supplementary investigation to determine the continued qualification of the applicant. The fee for such supplementary investigation is $225. Should applicant fail to file the requisite proof of financial responsibility within two years of the date of approval, the Commission will consider the application to be void.

 
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