Importer Questions

header_fishCustoms

  1. Can Customs supply me with a confirmed duty rate for my import product?
  2. What can I expect from a Customs Audit?
  3. What are some of the major changes that customs is making that impact importers?

Broker Information

  1. What are the duties of a broker?
  2. How soon does a broker need documents to clear shipment? What happens if I turn them in late?
  3. Can Flegenheimer clear shipments in other US ports or airports?
  4. What products do you deal with?

Importer Information

  1. What are the importer’s responsibilities?
  2. What do I need in order to claim free trade benefits?
  3. Where do I go to look up duty rates?
  4. How can I know if my packer/ manufacturer is FDA approved or is on automatic detention status?
  5. Which countries require an original DS 2031 shrimp importer/exporter declaration?
  6. What happens if my shipment is found to be in violation of FDA standards?
  7. What happens if my shipment is FDA refused?
  8. Do I have a choice on USDA examination facilities?
  9. How can I track my shipments easily?
  10. What experience do you have with the various steam ship lines? Which ones do you recommend?
  11. Do all facilities do FSIS testing?
  12. What government agencies will my product be regulated by?
  13. Which countries allow a pre-examination of my products?

Bonding / Licensing / Insurance

  1. Do I need Marine Insurance? How do I get it?
  2. When do I need a special importing license?
  3. What is a customs bond? Can I use Flegenheimer’s Bond?
  4. Why do I need to post collateral against my bond when importing anti-dumping duty products?
  5. Do I need a produce import license? How do I get one?

Customs

  1. Can Customs supply me with a confirmed duty rate for my import product?
    • Yes. An importer may request a binding ruling (confirmed duty rate and Harmonized Tariff Number) in accordance with section 177 of the Customs Regulations. Ruling requests must pertain to prospective shipments. The importer will be required to provide a statement concerning whether there are any issues related to the ruling request currently pending before the Customs Service or any court, and a statement concerning whether any previous guidance had been provided by Customs (and as applicable, what guidance was provided).
  2. What can I expect from a Customs Audit?
    • ISA is a voluntary approach to trade compliance. The program provides the opportunity for importers who have made a commitment of resources to assume responsibility for monitoring their own compliance in exchange for benefits.
  3. What are some of the major changes that customs is making that impact importers?
    • There have been numerous changes and additions to Customs regulations which is why having a broker that specializes in theses areas is critical. Changes include: First Sale Provisions, 10+2 Security Filing Act, Clean Port Act, Lacey Act (affecting Soft Lumber) , Uniform Rules of Origin, Lowenthal Bill (Additional Port Fees for LA, LB, Oakland, CA. Get more information on these regulation at www.cbp.gov

Broker Information

  1. What are the duties of a broker?
    • To deal with the formalities of importing into the US and to coordinate entries with US Customs and other government agencies.
  2. How soon does a broker need documents to clear shipment? What happens if I turn them in late?
    • Ocean Freight requires documentation 6-days prior to arrival. Air Freight requires documentation 2-days prior to arrival. If your shipment contains more than 5 different types of goods, we would need detailed documentation much earlier to allow time for classification. If they are received late, the cargo may be subject to delays and storage fees.
  3. Can Flegenheimer clear shipments in other US ports or airports?
    • Yes. Through the customs remote location filing program, we are able to file in all ports or airports. There are certain requirements: The importer of record needs to have a continuous bond on file. If you do not have a continuous bond on file, Flegenheimer Int. can still assist you at other ports using one of our partners at that location.
  4. What products do you deal with?
    • We specialize in perishable products, though we have extensive experience in all types of commodities including:
      1. Fruits and Nuts (Bananas, pineapples, berries, subtropical fruits, dates, macadamia nuts, etc.)
      2. Vegetables (Tomatoes, peppers, peas, herbs, mushrooms, asparagus, etc.)
      3. Meats (Beef, lamb, venison, pork, kangaroo, ostrich, etc.)
      4. Seafood (Sol, catfish, shrimp, tuna, salmon, swordfish, shark, sea bass, caviar, etc.)
      5. Horticultural Equipment (Greenhouse equipment, irrigation equipment, tractor accessories, etc.)
      6. Live plants and Flowers (Orchids, lilies, plant bulbs, tulips, lily of the valley, gladiolas, iris bulbs, etc.)
      7. Live Tropical Fish and Corals (Koi, coral, invertebrates, ornamental fish, etc.)
      8. Alcohol (Red/white/rose wine, sparkling wine, beer, hard alcohol, etc.)
      9. Milk Products (Milk, cheeses, yogurts, desserts, etc.)
      10. Furniture (Couches, chairs, tables, dressers, patio furniture, etc.)
      11. Hard Goods (Key chains, pet food bowls, wheels/rims, pens, etc.)
      12. Home Upgrades (Light fixtures, building materials, decor/decorations, etc.

Importer Information

  1. What are the importer’s responsibilities?
    • To provide customs broker with clear, legible, and accurate documentation in English in accordance with all Customs regulations. See Required Documents below.
  2. What do I need in order to claim free trade benefits?
  3. Where do I go to look up duty rates?
  4. How can I know if my packer/ manufacturer is FDA approved or is on automatic detention status?
  5. Which countries require an original DS 2031 shrimp importer/exporter declaration?
  6. What happens if my shipment is found to be in violation of FDA standards?
    • You have the option to recondition the product to bring it up to FDA regulations.
  7. What happens if my shipment is FDA refused after an attempt to recondition fails?
    • The shipment must be exported or destroyed within 90 days of refusal. Flegenheimer has handled thousands of these re-exportation and destruction shipments over their history. We are experts in this area and would be happy to assist importers.
  8. Do I have a choice on USDA/FSIS examination facilities?
    • Yes, there are multiple facilities around the airport and seaport that can handle your USDA/FSIS regulated merchandise.
  9. How can I track my shipments easily?
    • We offer online tracking to our clients, which offers real-time updates via email to you.
  10. What experience do you have with the various steam ship lines? Which ones do you recommend? (links to ones we recommend.)
    • We recommend APL, NYK, Hyundai, Mitsui OSK, Hanjin, MOL, CCNI Shipping Line and OOCL.
  11. Do all facilities do FSIS testing?
  12. What government agencies will my product be regulated by?
    • It depends on the product. All products must pass through US Customs, and depending on your specific product, it could be regulated by one or more of the following: US Department of Agriculture, Food and Drug Administration, Fish and Wildlife, Environmental Pretention Agency, Department of Transportation, Alcoholic Beverage Control, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, California Agriculture, Federal Communications Commission, and National Marine Fisheries. There may be additional government agencies involved. Please contact your Flegenheimer representative for more information.
  13. Which countries allow a pre-examination of my products?
    • A few countries allow a pre-examination of fruits vegetables and other specific plant products, to see complete list, click here.

Bonding / Licensing / Insurance

  1. Do I need Marine Insurance? How do I get it?
    • Marine Insurance is optional but highly advisable. We can assist you with acquiring it.
  2. When do I need a special importing license?
    • When importing goods that involve the following, but not limited to the following, agencies:
      1. Fish & Wildlife
      2. US Department of Agriculture
      3. Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms
      4. Environmental Protection Agency
      5. Department of Transportation
      6. Alcoholic Beverage Control
      7. Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms
      8. National Marine Fisheries
  3. What is a customs bond? Can I use Flegenheimer’s Bond?
    • This is a type of insurance for Customs revenue protection. It ensures payment to Customs in cases where the importer fails to pay duties and/or penalties. You may not use Flegenheimer’s Bond but Flegenheimer can write a single transaction or one year continuous bond for you.
  4. Why do I need to post collateral against my bond when importing anti-dumping duty products?
    • Anti-dumping duty products are a high risk for surety companies and they need to cover themselves in the event of a claim.
  5. Do I need a produce import license? How do I get one?

 

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