Here are answers to frequently asked questions.
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Q. What is an ISF Filing and what happens if I do not comply with them?
A. An ISF filing is a U.S. government mandate for all inbound Containerized Ocean Cargo to have shipment information transmitted to U.S. Customs prior to the cargo leaving the foreign port. Failure to comply could result in a $5,000 per occurrence penalty and the U.S. government has a 5-year window to audit your records.
Q. Do I need to file anything with the U.S. government prior to shipping out of the U.S.A.?
A. Many shipments with a value over $2,500 requires an AES (Automated Export System) filing with the Bureau of Census prior to export. Failure to do so could result in $10,000 per occurrence penalty.
Q. What is the minimum amount of paperwork I need to ship internationally?
A. Many shipments can be processed once a packing slip and commercial invoice are provided.
Q. What is a customs broker?
A. Customs brokers (or customs brokerage) are agents that help with the "clearing" of goods through customs barriers for importers and exporters (usually businesses). This is separate from the logistics costs of shipping items.
Q. What is ISPM 15?
A. International Standards For Phytosanitary Measures No. 15 (ISPM 15) is an International Phytosanitary Measure developed by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) that directly addresses the need to treat wood materials of a thickness greater than 6mm, used to ship products between countries. Failure to comply could result in fines, penalties and possible the destruction of goods shipped that are in violation.
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