USA Import Mistakes and How to Avoid them

The utmost responsibility for the declaration of goods, completion of documents and payment of Duty fee is on the Importer. The importer is the only person who will be considered legally negligent in case of any error related to import value, tariff classification, application of NAFTA and other trade related agreements. All the government regulations, trademark, and fees need to adhere properly while making the declaration. In order to avoid error during the import, you need to pay attention to a few common errors.

Some criteria need to fulfill in order to qualify for NAFTA. The eligibility for NAFTA is as followed:

  1. Obtaining Free trade Agreement Duty benefits (like NAFTA) through the application of Wrong Tariff treatment.
  • You need to fulfill the requirements outlined in ANNEX 401 that state the rules for determining whether your good qualifies as “Originating” in compliance with Harmonized Tariff Schedule.
  • Qualifyingthe goods as NAFTA origin in compliance with appropriate Marking Rules.

The importers are obliged to do the analysis before making any declaration or claiming to issue a NAFTA Certificate of Origin for the goods. In case of any discrepancy, the importer or the export may have to bear big penalties or seizure of goods.

USA import mistakes can lead to heavy penalties and and your consignment can be seized

  1. Marking the origin country intentionally wrong

The importers can call a big trouble if they deliberately mark a wrong country of origin of goods. The United States customs authorities are quite watchful on this particular violation. A huge penalty is been imposed for such activities both for civil and criminal. So, it is better for the importer not to violate marking original country of the goods.

  1. Under estimating the value of Imported Goods

The liability of mentioning the correct value of the goods lies on the importer. The undervaluation of goods might lead to the wrong estimation of Customs duties. This incorrect declaration, valuation can go on for a long run and can cause substantial under remittance of duties. In such cases, the importers are imposed with a substantial penalty that could be a very large amount to pay at once.

  1. Noncompliance to Record keeping

The United States and Canada both have rules and regulation that makes it necessary for the exporters, importers, carriers and the customs brokers to maintain all the customs records. The Record here refers to the information concerning to the goods that have been imported. Records contain all the documents of payment, fees taxes, and drawback claims including the NAFTA export certificate. According to Canada Customs rules, the record needs to be maintained for 6 years. Negligence to it can lead to your case being imposed Administrative Monetary Penalty System (AMPS) penalties that are in accordance with the subsection 109.1(1) of the Act or detain under the authority of section 41 of the Act. While in the United States you need to maintain the records for 5 years. Failing to this, you can be imposed recordkeeping penalties which can be substantial and will depend on failure whether it is intentional or due to negligence.

Hiring a Licensed Customs Clearance agent USA prevents you from common USA import mistakes and leads to faster shipment of your consignments. It is important that you get in touch with a fully licensed customer broker in the US as they are experts in handling all regulatory and mandatory paper work related to USA imports and in expediting the whole import process.

Glenn L. Lobas is a fully licensed customs broker with over 30 years of experience and a track record of helping over 200 clients on a regular basis. He can help you avoid USA import mistakes and also provide you with free consultation.

Call me: 443-912-3111 | 443-955-6556 

Mail: [email protected] 

or fill up the Contact Us form.

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