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Updated Importer Security Filing (ISF) Enforcement 


U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that it would begin tighter enforcement of either late or inaccurate Importer Security Filings (ISF) beginning June 30, 2016.  Non-compliant Importer Security Filings could result in an increase in penalties or cargo holds for importers at ports of entry.  (CSMS #14-000283)



Updated Importer Security Filing (ISF) Enforcement

CBP recently issued a CSMS for updated Importer Security Filing (ISF) Enforcement.

  • This new phase of ISF enforcement applies to ISF-10 shipments, not ISF-5, for ocean shipments on the water on or after June 30, 2016.
  • CBP-HQ provided new guidance to the ports to issue any ISF claims within 90 days of discovering the violation.
  • Although CBP ports will no longer be required to take a "three-strikes" approach before issuing liquidated damage (LD) claims or send these claims to CBP-HQ for review, each port will continue to have authority to manage their local enforcement posture as they do today.
  • Per existing policy, CBP will continue to focus on "significantly" late ISF shipments that preclude or compromise CBP's ability to target the cargo before it arrives in the U.S. For example, West Coast ports have longer ocean voyages so "significantly" late may be ISFs that are not filed within 72 hours to 5 days prior to arrival of the cargo in the U.S. Other ports with shorter voyages may focus on 24 hours prior to vessel departure (what the law requires).
  • We also expect CBP to focus on repeat violators which can include ISF shipments that are inaccurate because there is no bill of lading match, and/or the match was not made timely and compromised CBP's targeting prior to the cargo's arrival in the U.S.

Although CBP delayed these enforcement changes for over a year, the webinar that CBP hosted last May still provides relevant information. We encourage you to view the CBP Webinar Recording, Presentation, Transcript, and Q&A

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