Lately I have been asked about Storage-In-Transit (SIT) and Permanent Storage (long-term storage or non-temp storage). SIT is a transit or cargo issue, but storage is a warehousing issue.

What is the problem if a moving & storage company has both cargo and warehouse coverage? But what coverage applies if the shipment is SIT under your van line’s Bill of Lading? Or another moving company’s Bill of Lading? Your cargo coverage would not apply to such a SIT claim, but would your warehouse coverage apply? Different insurance companies might have different answers.

Let’s deal with a shipment that is completely under your control — If your Bill of Lading shows the origin address as the shipper’s old residence and the destination address as the shipper’s new address), the period of time the shipment is in your warehouse is definitely SIT. Be sure to know the length of the SIT period allowed under your tariff or regulation – 90 days, 120 days or longer.

If your Bill of Lading shows the destination address as your warehouse, there is no SIT period – the shipment should be converted to permanent storage when it is delivered into your warehouse.

If the ultimate destination address or delivery date is unknown when a shipment comes into your warehouse as SIT, many movers automatically convert such a shipment to permanent storage. This may not be a requirement, but it is recommended to avoid problems. If such a shipment sits in your warehouse as SIT past the number of days allowed (90, 120, 180) without being converted to permanent storage and there is a claim for loss or damage, there could certainly be an insurance coverage problem! Cargo coverage no longer applies and without a warehouse receipt the warehouse coverage might not apply.

Remember, properly executed documents protect you!