On November 1 st, 2017, CBP published a General Notice in the Federal Register titled ‘COBRA Fees To Be
Adjusted for Inflation in the fiscal year 2018 CBP Dec. 17–17’. This announces a change to current import entry fees, which importers need to be aware of.
By way of background, CBP explains that “On December 4, 2015, the Fixing America’s Surface
Transportation Act (FAST Act, Pub. L. 114–94) was signed into law. Section 32201 of the FAST Act
amended section 13031 of the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) of 1985 (19
U.S.C. 58c) by requiring certain customs COBRA user fees and corresponding limitations to be adjusted
by the Secretary of the Treasury (Secretary) to reflect certain increases in inflation ”.
The long-and-short of it for the majority of importers, is that the Harbor Maintenance Fee (HMF) will be
adjusted to a minimum of $25.67. The Merchandise Processing Fee (MPF) cap will be adjusted to $497.99.
This change will go into effect on January 1, 2018.