AUDITS & CBP INQUIRIES
For the last few years, U.S. Customs has been increasing its focus on auditing importers and exporters. Customs uses a variety of factors to choose which companies are audited, meaning that even small or seemingly-compliant companies may be chosen. Rules such as Reasonable Care place a large responsibility on companies to verify their Customs compliance.
If Customs has questions about your importing practices, has provided you with a questionnaire or notified you of an audit, we can help you comply with Customs’ requirements. We will help you identify areas of non-compliance and decide how best to disclose them to Customs.
As part of our Audit Assistance service, we will:
- Review and prepare questionnaires.
- Attend the initial audit/importer meeting.
- Review Customs’ selected sample transactions for completeness, accuracy in order to understand the level of compliance prior to submission to Customs.
- Continue to provide technical support throughout the audit.
The best way to be prepared for inquiries from Customs is to regularly review your trade compliance. Our team of compliance experts is available to assist with internal reviews and will be next to your side through any Customs audits.
A broad or focused review of your documented processes ensures that global operations are being conducted in a compliant and financially efficient manner.
This audit may also include a detailed analysis of all import data filed under your Importer of Record number. By analyzing a report of all ACE or Importer Trade Activity (ITRAC) data, we provide a detailed review of your supply chain, suppliers, and Customs brokers that identifies current efficiencies and areas for improved compliance.
Post-Entry Compliance Audits
Every importer should have an audit process to ensure that entries are being filed in compliance with CBP regulations. Regular audits help verify that customs brokers are representing the importer accurately and shows CBP that the importer is acting with reasonable care.
Through a post-entry audit, M-PACT Solutions will review a sampling of import data in order to determine compliance with record keeping regulations, identify discrepancies in CBP documents, and monitor the accuracy of customs brokers.
Importer Self Assessment
Whether your company wants to “self-assess” themselves or begin to participate in the CBP Importer Self- Assessment Program, we can help you achieve this. Voluntary Self-Assessment can help your import process become trade compliant. This program allows importers to monitor their own importing process with a series of mini-audits to compare HTS classification, valuation, FTA and OGA requirements. Importers assume responsibility for monitoring their own compliance in exchange for benefits. M-PACT Solutions can set up these mini-audits and teach company personnel how to perform them each month to identify holes in your import process.
To determine whether an export license is needed from the Department of Commerce, you will need to assign a specific Export Control Classification Number (ECCN). ECCN’s are alpha-numeric designations used on the Commerce Control List (CCL). An ECCN is based on the nature of the product, as in type of commodity, software, or technology and its technical parameters.
Freight Forwarder / EEI Filer Audit
Shippers can ensure they have a comprehensive view of all exports declared under their name by regularly reviewing their Electronic Export Information (EEI) data from the US Census Bureau.
By analyzing this data, M-PACT Solutions creates a report that identifies export activity, trends, and risks to a compliant supply chain.
The Focused Assessment Program uses a risk-based approach in order to audit importers based on size, overall import volume, and the nature and volume of import activity with regards to CBP’s Priority Trade Issues and other known risks (e.g. countries of origin, manufacturers, HTS classifications, use of free trade agreements, antidumping/countervailing duties).
- M-PACT Solutions works with you throughout the process, starting at your first notice from CBP.
- Pre-audit explanation of the Focused Assessment process, CBP expectations, and how to prepare for the audit.
- Review of current compliance procedures for strengths and areas of improvement.
- Sampling analysis of import documentation to test compliance and identify potential CBP concerns.
- Researching and replying to CBP requests for information.
- Development of Compliance Improvement Plans.
The Binding Ruling Program allows importers to obtain binding HTS classification decisions from the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) for any products entering the US commerce. M-PACT experts can help you write and submit your request to CBP for a binding HTS ruling. This program promotes compliance and accuracy to your import process.
CBP authorities realize that humans make errors. So, CBP allows importers to come forward and correct a non-compliant error on an entry document after the designated time limit for corrections. Importers can voluntarily disclose the non-compliance to Customs, make the necessary corrections and pay any outstanding duties and taxes with interest. Once Customs discovers the error or initiates an audit with your company, voluntary disclosure is no longer an option. M-PACT experts can help you find these non-compliant areas and make CBP aware of your future plans to correct the issues.
Customs Inquiries, CF 28 & CF 29
When you hear the numbers 28 and 29, Customs is referring to:
- CBP Form 28 – Request for Information
- CBP Form 29 – Notice of Action
- CF 28 is a form used by Customs to attain additional information from an importer concerning a specific shipment or transaction. CF 29 is a form used by Customs that lets an Importer know that an action has taken place such as classification, duty rate, etc. to your shipment entry.
Do not ignore these forms! Allow M-PACT experts to guide you through the process.
Anti-Dumping & Countervailing Duty Review
If you think that your imported product might be subject to ADD/CVD duties and you would like to know more, a M-PACT expert can help! We can research your product and the open cases to confirm or deny if your company will have additional duties upon import. Do not wait until your product arrives in the US to determine the true cost of the import.