To understand a notice of assignment, trucking company owners first have to be familiar with factoring—and to understand factoring, we’ll have to discuss the nuances of cash flow in the shipping industry.
Basically, the challenge for fleet owners (and owner-operators) is that their customers take forever to pay their invoices. You deliver a load and issue the invoice. The shipper may take 30 or 45 or 60 days—or more—to pay that invoice. Meanwhile, you’ve got fuel costs, payroll, insurance payments, and the thousand other financial obligations that keep your trucks on the road. You need that invoice paid now.
Factoring is the industry’s solution for quick payments to carriers. A factoring company steps in and pays your invoice today. Then that company collects from your customer, the shipper or broker who hired you to haul a given load. For their service, the factoring company keeps a low percentage of the total invoice value. (With Bobtail, the factoring fee ranges from 1.99% to 2.99%, depending on the volume of invoices you factor.)
Note that factoring is not a loan; the factoring company buys your invoices, so there’s no compounding interest or credit impact. Factoring beats loans as a cash-flow solution, hands down.
Struggling with slow payments from shippers and brokers? Keep cash flowing the simple way with Bobtail factoring.
With these preliminaries out of the way, we’re ready to answer the question that brought you here: What exactly is a notice of assignment in trucking?
Defining The Notice Of Assignment In Trucking
Factoring requires shippers and brokers to make changes in their billing systems. You’re no longer the collector on a factored invoice; the factoring company is. Accounts payable departments are busy places, and it’s easy for a shipper’s finance team to get confused when you do the work but another company collects the payment (after that company pays you, of course).
A notice of assignment clears up the billing relationship in a factoring agreement. A notice of assignment is a contractual document, supplied to both the carrier and the customer, that tells the customer to pay the factoring company, not the carrier.
The notice of assignment is an essential piece of paperwork, one of the documents you’ll have to keep on file as you establish a factoring relationship. You’ll have to sign the notice of assignment, and so will your customer. In short, this is a contractual agreement that carries legal consequences, and clarifies who exactly the shipper should pay for a delivered load.
Why is a notice of assignment important?
Consider the case of a trucking company that shifts to factoring after months or years of collecting directly from a shipper. That carrier’s payment details are already set up in the shipper’s accounting systems. Due to accidents or willful fraud, it’d be easy for the carrier to collect on an invoice twice—once from the factoring company and again from the customer.
In that scenario, the factoring company loses money, or at least becomes embroiled in a flurry of paperwork and legal challenges. So the notice of assignment is designed to protect the factoring company. But this document provides benefits for you, the carrier, and your customers, too.
How A Notice Of Assignment Benefits Shippers And Carriers
Who needs more paperwork? While it may seem like just another legal document, notices of assignment are actually helpful for all three parties involved in a factoring payment deal: the factoring company, sure, but also the carrier and the customer.
For shippers, the notice of assignment is a strong incentive to update payment details in their accounting systems. It delineates the nature of the financial agreement. It provides visibility and clarity that avoids conflict down the line. Most importantly, factoring companies require shippers to sign a notice of assignment—and factoring benefits customers, too. It keeps them from having to renegotiate payment terms, and gives them the full 30 or 60 days to pay, which allows them to optimize their own cash utilization.
Carriers also benefit from the clarity that comes with a notice of assignment. This document allows you to rest assured that the customer won’t accidentally pay you for a factored invoice, so you don’t have to spend all day trying to get the money into the right hands—or face collection threats of your own.
The binding agreement contained within a notice of assignment protects you from legal problems. It’s simply smart business to make sure everyone knows exactly who should get paid, and for what. Notices of assignment accomplish this goal—and, with Bobtail, the paperwork is simpler than you might think.
Simplifying Notices Of Assignment
Traditional factoring companies aren’t the most efficient financial operators in the world. They make you sign restrictive contracts. They might even tell you who you can work with, and who you can’t. They stack hidden fees on everything from set-up to ACH transfers to terminating the deal. And they make you fill out reams of paperwork before depositing a cent.
Bobtail is different every step of the way. We started this company to eliminate the inefficiencies in the factoring process, and that includes personalized assistance with handling notices of assignment.
When you sign up with Bobtail—a quick, online process involving a single application form—you’ll get a personal account manager who’s always ready to answer questions and solve problems. They’ll issue your notice of assignment and make sure your customers understand the document and why it’s necessary.
All you have to do is carry on carrying loads.
When you decide to factor an invoice, the process is even simpler. Just deliver the load, upload the invoice, attach a rate confirmation and a bill of lading, and get paid. It’s all done through Bobtail’s online system, so you can handle financing from the rig. We also provide a user-friendly digital dashboard that makes it easy to track every invoice at every step of the financing process. There’s simply no easier way to factor an invoice.
At Bobtail, we believe that you know what’s best for your business. That’s why we don’t make you sign a long-term contract; this is no-contract factoring. You pick which accounts to factor and which to collect from directly, and we don’t have volume requirements or exclusive financing deals.
We also don’t charge hidden fees. You just pay a flat factoring fee so there’s no confusion on exactly how much cash will hit your bank account—or when. Invoices are filled the same day you submit them, or the next day if the invoice arrives after 11 a.m. Eastern time.
Don’t be intimidated by a notice of assignment in trucking—or any other documents related to your factoring service. With Bobtail, our devoted customer service team makes sure everything runs smoothly, and we’re there to help every step of the way. Or, as one Trustpilot review puts it:
“They always answer the phone! The staff is very helpful and cordial. The three things I love are: Payments are on time, the website is easy to use, and great customer service!”
(Read more customer reviews on Trustpilot.)
If you have questions about account set-up, notices of assignment, or anything else related to factoring, contact the Bobtail sales team at (410) 204-2084, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.