Basics of direct filing customs entries and ISFs, part 3

Are you a US importer who is interested in direct filing your customs entries (and ISFs) but don’t know where to start?  Here’s the third installment of helpful FAQs that provide general guidance on self-filing with an approved ABI software provider such as CustomsNow™.  (See FAQs Part 1 and Part 2).

Who takes care of the additional steps when a Customs or other exam is required?

As a self-filer, you are responsible to arrange for the movement of the container and/or the devanning of the cargo. Therefore it is important to establish a relationship with a trucking company and Customs Exam Station (CES) within the port of entry.

How do I pay the collect freight charges and or submit an original bill of lading (OBL) to the carrier?

The payment and/or OBL can be submitted directly to the carrier or freight forwarder in the U.S. any time prior to the release of the freight.

Who arranges the delivery of the shipment after clearance?

Delivery can be arranged by either the forwarder, carrier or by the importer. In the CustomsNow™ system, a delivery order is auto-populated as the entry is created making it very simple to print, fax or email to the delivering carrier.

Will I have access to entry / liquidation status of my entries?

With 24/7 Customs access via ABI you’ll be able to not only query the entry and liquidation status of entries which you direct file, but on any of your entries regardless of by whom they were filed. The only thing needed is the complete entry number. The query returns details such as current status, scheduled liquidation date, duties and taxes.

What are the recordkeeping requirements for direct filers?

CBP’s recordkeeping requirements for importers are the same whether the entries are direct filed or filed by a broker. The importer is required to keep copies of all entries and related documents according to the regulations. With CustomsNow™you’ll be able to print or save to soft copy (with CBP approval) all documents, plus the documents are accessible for reprint at anytime in the future.

What if I decide I don’t want to direct file anymore?

There is no requirement from either CustomsNow™ or CBP to direct file once you’re set up. The filer code issued by CBP is yours whether it is used or not.

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