Pre-compliance

From Chaos to Compliance: A Guide for Importers

Many mistake the ease of importing to mean there is no liability or obligation on the part of the importer. Whether your company is new to importing, or has been in the business for years, CBP expects importers to use “reasonable care” to ensure compliance with relevant rules and regulations. Importers are at risk of being subject to enforcement actions by CBP if they do not comply with the reasonable care standard when importing goods into the U.S. This article provides an overview of CBP’s expectations of an importer and practical advice on what you must have in your import compliance plan.

How Did We Get Here?

December 8th, 1993, the Dow Jones reached a record high of 3734.53, Janet Jackson’s “Again” remained number one on the charts, and President Bill Clinton signed the Customs Modernization Act (Mod Act). The Mod Act altered the import compliance landscape by making it the responsibility of the importer to classify items, determine their value, etc. The law also imposed a legal obligation to use “reasonable care” in doing so, or else Customs could (and would) impose penalties.

What Exactly is “Reasonable Care”?

Reasonable care requires importers to conduct themselves as a reasonable importer would under the circumstance with respect to importing goods into the United States.

Reasonable care requires importers to:

  • Meet the standard to enter, classify and determine the value of imported goods
  • Provide other information necessary to aid CBP in properly assessing duties and collecting accurate statistics
  • Determine whether other applicable legal standards and […]
By |2024-04-19T15:30:55-04:00April 19, 2024|Import, Pre-compliance|0 Comments

U.S. Customs – Your Personal Policeman at the Border

Introduction 

Many companies mistakenly believe that registering a trademark or copyright with the U.S. Government provides sufficient protection and remedies. However, there is an additional step that can significantly enhance protection—recording trademarks or copyrights with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (U.S. Customs).  

This blog explores the distinct goals of these processes and the advantages of recording intellectual property with the U.S. Customs. 

I. Registering with USPTO and Recording with U.S. Customs: Different Goals

  • Registering with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) or U.S. Copyright Office gives public notice of ownership. 
  • Recording with U.S. Customs aims to prevent unauthorized importation of merchandise bearing the registered intellectual property. 
  • U.S. Customs serves as a critical partner in halting counterfeit and infringing products from entering or leaving the United States.

II. Benefits of Recording Trademarks or Copyrights with U.S. Customs

Seizure and Monitoring: 

  • U.S. Customs monitors and seizes infringing merchandise at ports of entry, alleviating the burden on trademark or copyright holders. 
  • This proactive approach eliminates the need to individually locate and prosecute every unauthorized importer, distributor, or retailer, safeguarding intellectual […]

UFLPA DHS Forced Labor Guidance – What Importers Need to Know

On June 17,  2022, DHS published its long-awaited strategy guidance document which shed light on how UFLPA will be implemented, and what evidence may be provided to rebut the presumption that the goods were made with forced labor. This article provides an overview of the type of evidence importers should have readily available when importing goods into the United States. For general guidance on preventing the importation of goods produced with forced labor and how importers should audit their supply chain to ensure non-use of forced labor, please refer to our Bloomberg Law article, “U.S. Customs Targets Use of Forced Labor”.

UFLPA

The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) establishes a rebuttable presumption that goods mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in part in the Xinjiang Province of China or by an entity on the UFLPA Entity List are prohibited from importation into the United States under 19 U.S.C. § 1307. However, if an Importer of Record can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that the goods in question were not produced wholly or in part by forced labor, fully respond to all CBP requests for information about goods under CBP review and demonstrate that it has fully complied with the guidance outlined in this strategy, the Commissioner of CBP may grant an exception to the presumption.

Clear and convincing evidence is a higher standard of proof than a preponderance of the evidence, and generally means that a claim or […]

International Trade Today: CBP Policy Change Makes Extensions for Prior Disclosures More Difficult

Diaz Trade Law’s President, Jennifer Diaz is enthusiastic to announce International Trade Today featured her perspective in their recent article, “CBP Policy Change Makes Extensions for Prior Disclosures More Difficult, Lawyer Says“! Below is the article reproduced for your reading pleasure. You can read the article here (where you’ll have the ability to access the link to the CBP guidance).

A previous article written by Jen and Sharath focuses on how to successfully submit a prior disclosure (PD) to Customs and Border Protection, along with details known of CBP’s new timing requirements, which had not been circulated publicly (prior to our FOIA request). We truly feel CBP’s new deadlines place a burden on importers that must be considered PRIOR to filing a PD. If you are considering filing a Prior Disclosure – PLEASE communicate with counsel first.

Please note you cannot click on the hyperlink below. We’d love to hear your feedback!

 

 

 

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Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA): What You Need to Know

Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) and What You Need to Know?

On June 16, 2022, CBP held a webinar on the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA). The UFLPA goes into effect June 21, 2022 so it is critical that importers are proactive about forced labor compliance in preparation for this implementation. During the webinar CBP discussed their recently published operational guidance for importers. This blog article provides an overview of CBP’s current enforcement environment and how UFLPA will change CBP’s enforcement procedures for imports generally, and specifically from the Xinjiang region. For general guidance on preventing the importation of goods produced with forced labor and how importers should audit their supply chain to ensure non-use of forced labor, please refer to our Bloomberg Law article, “U.S. Customs Targets Use of Forced Labor”.

Background

Under Section 307 of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1307), CBP derives the authority for preventing the entry into the U.S. market of products made with forced labor by investigating and acting upon allegations of forced labor in supply chains. CBP issues Withhold Release Orders (WROs) and findings to prevent merchandise produced in whole or in part in a foreign country using forced labor from being imported into the United States. CBP defines Forced labor as all work or service which is extracted from any person under the menace of any penalty for its nonperformance and for which the worker does not […]

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