New OTI Rules Now in Effect - Federal Maritime Commission
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New OTI Rules Now in Effect


Non-vessel-operating common carriers (NVOCCs) will now need their required bond, insurance or other form of surety and their Form FMC-1 (published tariff location) on file before the Federal Maritime Commission will issue their NVOCC license.

This new requirement is one of several changes to Commission regulations governing OTIs contained in a Final Rule, “Licensing, Registration, Financial Responsibility Requirements, and General Duties for Ocean Transportation Intermediaries” (Docket No. 18-11), becoming effective December 16, 2019.

Other key changes to FMC regulations of interest to forwarders and NVOCCs are:

  • Applicants employing officers, managers, or members from an OTI whose license was revoked or denied within the previous three years are subject to direct Commission review.
  • Applicants previously determined to be unqualified to provide OTI services are also subject to direct Commission review.
  • Clarification on eligibility to be a Qualified Individual when partnerships are involved.
  • The initial renewal of an OTI license can take place no sooner than one-year and no later than four-years from issuance. All subsequent renewals will take place on regular three-year intervals.
  • All application forms (FMC-18) are now filed electronically.