ACE Is Beginning to Elicit Changes

Thursday, August 4, 2016

ACE Is Beginning to Elicit Changes

We have heard that importers are beginning to receive letters from Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reminding them of their responsibilities in exercising reasonable care in the preparation and filing of customs entries and providing guidance by identifying several Customs Informed Compliance Publications.

CBP’s intent is to promote compliance proactively by alerting importers to use due diligence in auditing their import procedures and entry declarations. Alternately, it is the belief of some that in the event of any violations, these same messages may be used to increase potential penalty claims if CBP identifies the issues initially. CBP is sending a clear message to importers encouraging importers to conduct thorough compliance audits and to file prior disclosures to minimize penalty exposure.

Additionally, CBP is relating information regarding the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 stating that Congress has mandated that CBP increase their trade enforcement efforts and in the prosecution of child and forced labor violations and CBP must report to Congress on these issues, so allegations of such activity will be investigated. For more information regarding child and forced labor initiatives, please click on the link provided below:

https://www.cbp.gov/trade/trade-community/programs-outreach/convict-importations

Investigations of potential Anti-Dumping and Countervailing violations are increasing as well and this too serves as a reminder that compliance audits and vendor audits should be firmly in place to avoid potential problems and possibly mitigate penalties in the event of a CBP investigation.